How to cut clean lawn edges

A guide to edging lawns

Discover how to cut perfect lawn edges for a professional finish, using our simple practical guide.

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Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
At its best
At its best

Plant is not at its best in January

Plant is not at its best in February

Plant is not at its best in March

Plant is not at its best in April

Plant is not at its best in May

Plant is at its best in June

Plant is at its best in July

Plant is at its best in August

Plant is not at its best in September

Plant is not at its best in October

Plant is not at its best in November

Plant is not at its best in December

To do
To do

Do not To do in January

Do not To do in February

Do To do in March

Do To do in April

Do To do in May

Do not To do in June

Do not To do in July

Do not To do in August

Do To do in September

Do To do in October

Do To do in November

Do not To do in December

Overgrown lawn edges can look unsightly and make an otherwise healthy, well-cared for garden look untidy. For a professional finish, re-cut the edges of your lawn each spring and trim overhanging grass after mowing.

Find out how to do so, in our guide.

How to edge a lawn

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You Will Need

  • Half-moon edger
  • Edging shears
  • Long-handled grass shears
  • Plank of wood or long rope

Total time:

Step 1

Re-cut the edges of your lawn in spring with a half-moon edging tool. For a straight edge, cut against a plank of wood; for a curve, trim along a rope laid on the edge of the lawn. Alternatively, simply follow the existing curve of the lawn.

How to cut clean lawn edges - re-cutting the edges
How to cut clean lawn edges – re-cutting the edges

Step 2

After mowing, trim edges with long-handled edging shears, to cut grass the mower couldn’t reach. For a really professional finish, remove the cuttings and pop them on the compost heap.

How to cut clean lawn edges - trimming the edges
How to cut clean lawn edges – trimming the edges

Step 3

For grass which has grown over onto paths, use a sharp knife to cut the turf and pull pieces away.

How to cut clean lawn edges - cutting turf off a path
How to cut clean lawn edges – cutting turf off a path

Step 4

Where the lawn is flush with the path, long-handled grass shears may be more appropriate. These are shaped like scissors and enable you to get down to the same level as the lawn and path, and snip a clean edge.

How to cut clean lawn edges - using long-handles grass shears
How to cut clean lawn edges – using long-handles grass shears

Step 5

If you’d rather not regularly maintain your lawn edges, you may find spiked metal sheeting is a good alternative. This is fixed into the ground to retain the outline of the lawn, preventing the grass from growing into your borders.

How to cut clean lawn edges - fixing metal sheeting to the edge
How to cut clean lawn edges – fixing metal sheeting to the edge
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What’s the best lawn edger?

Edging a lawn with lawn shears

Edging the lawn is the final touch to the mowing regime and gives you a neat, manicured finish.

For small lawns, a pair of long-handled edging shears are the simple choice. Carbon steel blades are strong and can be sharpened regularly for a neat clipped edge but should be coated to ensure rust resistance. Telescopic handles will help you get the length right for you so you can do the job standing up straight and not put pressure on your back.

For larger lawns, or to speed up the job, look for an electric edger or a grass trimmer with an edging mode.
Try before you buy if you can, testing the weight of the edger and how easy it is to use. Many have depth control, a wheel to ensure a straight line and telescopic handles to ease back strain.

Grass trimmers with an edging option perform two jobs for the price of one but check that switching between jobs is simple. Some also have a wheel to help you achieve that neat edge.

There’s also the option of plug in or cordless – the latter is more expensive but there’s no cable to worry about and machines are quieter and less of a drain on your electricity in the long run.

Buy hand lawn edgers on Amazon

Buy electric lawn edgers on Amazon