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I'd plant a dwarf lavender hedge - trim it back to around 8 or 10 inches once a year after flowering and there you are - it'll look wonderful throughout the summer and very in keeping with the house
Some info here http://www.bbc.co.uk/gardening/htbg2/flat/module3/pathside_planting1.shtml
add some grit to the soil as lavenders like it well drained, and mound the soil slightly then put your plants into it, so that when it rains the plants aren't sitting in a damp hollow.
It'll look gorgeous - there are several different lavenders that would be suitable, I'd recommend one of the English varieties as they're hardier.
Enjoy your gardening
Sedums and small hebes also make good path edgers, as do some smaller hostas - unless you have a great number of slugs and snails.
Visited one of the NationalTrust houses in Cornwall earlier in the year, they had used alpine strawberries to edge a path, looked glorious and it is edible.
chris2 I am confused this says santolinas are half hardy?
I would have said that santolinas are not as long lasting as lavenders - Cornish winters are not usually as hard as those just a little further north, and while I admit that santolinas have a smell, personally I would not compare it with the beautiful scent of lavender.
The lavender fields in Norfolk cope with everything that the east wind from the Urals and the North Sea can throw at them every winter and look at them http://www.norfolk-lavender.co.uk/pages/lavender-fields.php.
The plants are cut back rigorously every year and they last for years and years.
I too would recommend English lavender such as Hidcote or Munstead Dwarf. I have a hedge of the former and it has withstood some very harsh winters in the 12 years it's been planted. It provides perfume and is a bee magnet. If you leave the trimming till some of the flowers have set seed, you'll have babies to grow on in case you do need replacements?