How To Edge Lawn or Flower Bed With Shovel? [8 Simple Steps]

Making your lawn look neat afterward is vital to mowing the grass, so you must learn how to edge your lawn or flower bed with a shovel.

Edging your flower bed is a perfect way of cleaning it. It also helps to reduce the level of grass that invades your sidewalks and lawns. Fixing untidy lawn edges is very easy. Patience and the right tools are all you need.

This article will focus on how to edge your lawn or flower bed using a shovel.

Tools & Materials Needed To Perfectly Edge Your Lawn

  • Flat-edged shovel
  • Pruning shears
  • Garden hose
  • Strings
  • 2 wooden sticks
  • Can of spray paint
  • Protective gear (gloves, goggles, close-toed shoes)
  • Hand shears
  • Mulch
  • Broom
  • Wheelbarrow

Guide on How To Edge Your Lawn With a Shovel Perfectly

Step 1: Mark Out the Area You Want To Edge

If you are edging your lawn for the first time, it is advised to mark the path using a garden hose or rope where you want the edging done. Setting a line before edging the lawn is important and will lead to neater work.

You can make a straight line with a string and two wooden sticks. Set 2 sticks in the ground 1–2 inches from the lawn’s edge. Then, tie a string or rope to connect both sticks to form a line. This line is called the edge.

You can also spray paint your edge path instead of using a rope. If the lawn’s edge is curvy, spray paint is better than sticks and strings. Shake the spray paint before use and spray the edges 1–2 inches from the lawn’s edge.

Make sure you paint parallel to the edge of the lawn.

Step 2: Set Your Line From One End to Another

If your lawn is straight, start at one end and finish at the other. It is, however, advisable to do that at the center of a curved lawn. This helps you to control the edge shape easily.

Step 3: Dig 2 Inches With Your Shovel

Whichever method you use, do not dig further than 2 inches. Be careful so you do not damage buried cables and pipes. Using the flat-edge shovel, place the blade along the line you created at an angle of 90 degrees.

Push down the shovel with your hand and foot 2 inches into the ground. Once it is in the ground, push it out to remove the dirt and the grass. The 2 inches depth is not a must, but it is a good depth and will prevent you from damaging underground wires and pipes.

Step 4: Create a Straight Line

You must remove the cut turf to create clean lines. You can step back a little to observe where you might have made a wobble and make corrections. As you cut the grass along the line, use your shovel to remove the cut grass from the area.

At the end of the line, you should have created a straight and parallel edge to your flower bed.

Step 5: Bring Out Your Hand Shears

Now it is time to perfect the edges. Bring out your hand shears and get started. Cut the grass neatly in a way that it aligns perfectly with the edge. Hand shears are the perfect tool for this job.

When the edges are sharp, the lawn looks beautiful and tidy. For sharp edges, place your shears vertically along the trench and cut all the grass blades from the lawn into the edge line.

Be careful while doing this to avoid destroying the edge. Do this 3 or more times through the growing season to keep your edges neat and maintained.

Step 6: Clean the Area

The area must be cleaned when you are done edging. This is why you have to sweep the whole area.  Sweep the edge area to remove the littered dirt and grasses you dug out when making your edge. You can use the wheelbarrow to carry out the dirt and debris out of the garden bed.

Step 7: Mulch the Bed

Add about 2-3 inches of mulch to your flower bed. This helps to reduce the growth of weeds and beautify the edge with its dark rich color. Mulch from the bottom of the edge you created up to the top of your flower bed.

Drag the mulch from the top of the flower bed to the edging at an angle. Pack the mulch, so it doesn’t scatter when water passes through it to the soil.

Add enough mulch to maintain the desired depth whenever you notice the mulch depleting.

Tranquil garden scene with a bench amid lush greenery and vibrant flowers.

What Makes s Good Mulch?

Mulch can serve many purposes, but it must fulfill certain criteria to be effective: stay in place, allow water and gas exchange, be non-toxic, and create a favorable environment for plants.

Choosing the right type is important, as some break down faster and require frequent replenishment.

Additionally, the amount of mulch should be appropriate – too much can lead to water repellency, and too little to insufficient protection.

Moreover, the depth varies depending on the material and plants.

Lastly, mulch’s color should be considered, as some can reflect too much light, making the soil too hot.

Step 8: Clean Your Tools

Your tools are essential. This is why you should take care of them. After using them, clean the equipment to remove dirt and debris. This will prevent them from rusting.

In general, cleaning your shovel after use will increase its lifespan.

Why Should I Edge My Lawn?

Bed edging shows care and attention to detail and contributes to a garden’s motion, direction, and personality. Neat edges create a unified look, while sloppy ones can be distracting.

Although it takes some time and effort, bed edging is relatively easy.

It can range from outlining a flower bed with a spade to installing a raised bed or a wall of stones.  Regardless of the method, edging adds sophistication and a sense of completeness to any garden.

Taking the time to edge your beds will ensure your garden beds look inviting and well-kept, creating a beautiful backdrop for your guests to admire.


Edging helps improve the general outlook of your lawn or flowerbed. After a job well done, you can now relax and enjoy the aesthetics of a perfectly-edged yard!

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