How to Edge a Lawn without an Edger

Lawn edging is becoming extremely popular with gardeners and homeowners thanks to the many benefits it has to offer. It refers to a landscaping procedure that creates a clear separation between your lawn and other sections of your yard.

The main advantage of edging your lawn is that it prevents grass from growing into your flowerbeds or creeping onto pavements. Regular edging ensures that your lawn looks neat and appealing without different sections overlapping into others. It results in a well manicured loan that is aesthetically pleasing and easy to maintain.

Other benefits of edging include:improved curb appeal, lower maintenance costs, better drainage and others.

Lawn edging basics

Edging is a simple landscaping process that results in a neat, organized look. Improper edging has the opposite effect, resulting in jarred edges and an unisghltly and untidy look.. Below are five simple steps that every gardener/landscaper should follow to ensure proper edging;

1. Make a plan

Ensure that you have a plan in place before you start edging. This plan should include things like areas to be edged, supplies needed, whether to DIY or hire a landscaping team and others. Your plan should also include a budget for items you will need. This will help you avoid multiple trips to the store and ensure that your edging project is completed within stipulated timelines.

2. Choose your tools

There is a lot that goes into the selection of an edging tool. First of all, you need to decide whether you want a manually operated edger or one that is powered by petrol, electricity or batteries. Secondly, you need to choose a tool that is compatible with your landscape. Comfort is another major factor to consider as you do not want a tool that is hard on your hands. Finally, choose a tool that is easy to use and one that gets the job done without too much strain.

3. Start the edging process

Once you have a plan in place and have put your edging tools together, it is time to start the edging process. This will involve mowing your loan, laying out your edges and diging out both straight and curved edges.

How to edge a lawn without an edger

There are different types of tools that you can use to edge your lawn. The most common of these are edgers. However, you may choose to edge with other types of tools due to the unavailability of edgers or due to your own preference. Below are a few ways you can edge a lawn without an edger;

1. Use a shovel

If you do not have the money to purchase fancy edging tools, then a simple shovel can help you achieve the look you are going for. A shovel will save you the expense of having to buy special tools and install edging materials. As long as you follow a few simple steps, you can create neat edges that rival those created with sophisticated edgers. Below are the steps you need to follow while edging with a shovel;

  • Mark out lawn edges with spray paint or a gardening hose (for curved edges).
  • Use your shovel to trace along the line that you want to edge.
  • Make a deep cut of 4-6 inches into the sod.
  • Remove the excess sod by sticking your shovel underneath it and prying it out. Discard it appropriately.
  • Clean up the area where you made the edge, smooth out the soil and get rid of any extra grass, roots and remaining debris.

2. Edge with a string trimmer

A string trimmer is a gardening tool that is used for cutting grass in tight spots where a regular lawn mower cannot reach. This includes places near fences or close to flower beds. It is also a great edging tool that you can use to create clean edges by following a few simple precautions.

First of all, place the trimmer at a 90 degree angle so that the cutting line rotates up and down instead of left to right. The ideal string trimmer for edging is a battery powered one as it weights about 5 pounds. This makes it easier to manipulate and cut straight lines.

Take extra care when edging with a string trimmer to avoid injuries from flying debris. In addition, string trimmers’ cutting lines rotate at up to 10,000 rpm. Touching the line while it is in operation will cause serious injury.

Protect your eyes by wearing goggles and ensure to use earphones as string trimmers are extremely loud when in use.
Before using your string trimmer, ensure that you first mark out the area you want to edge. Place it about four inches above the marked line and power it on. The cutting lines should edge along your marked area and provide you with nice clean edges.

Ensure that you clean up your edges and get rid of any debris left over from the process.

3. Use shears

Shears are a lightweight, safe and effective edging tool. You can choose to use regular shears or special edging shears for your project. The main difference between the two is that regular lawn shears have horizontal blades while edging shears have vertical ones.

Regardless of which option you choose to use, you will need to do some prior preparation in order to ensure that they work optimally. Start by sharpening the shears if they have not been pre-sharpened. Next, adjust the blade tension to ensure optimal cutting.

Next, lay your shears against a marked out edge and slice off the extra sod. Sweep up grass clippings, soil and other debris and dispose of it.


Edging is a great way to keep your lawn well manicured and polished. The process is usually carried out using special tools known as edgers. However, you might not have edgers available or amight be low on the funds required to purchase them. You can use the tools in your shed to carry out this process. Items like shears, string trimmers and shovels can help you trim your lawn. This way, you can ensure that your lawn looks neat and trim even in the abscence of regular edging tools.