Trench edging is cheap, but it doesn’t keep mulch from sliding out of a flower bed. Even worse, since we have clay soil that doesn’t drain, every time it rains the trench turns into the perfect mosquito nursery.
I saw a few examples of edging I liked as Blitzkrieg and I bopped around the neighborhood on our
My in-laws inadvertently came to my rescue. Last summer they were taking Husband and I on a tour of the little farm they inherited. We came across a junk pile and tut tutted its existence. Then I spied some bricks amongst the beer bottles and junk in the pile.
“Hey Dad, what are you going to do with the bricks?” I asked.
“Get rid of them, throw them out I suppose.” He said.
“Can I have them?” I asked.
Husband gave me a look that was a mix between this could be being good or it could kill my back.
I loaded up as many bricks as the trunk of our car could hold. Two trips later, I had enough bricks to make a dry stack garden border around my flower beds.
How to Make a Dry Stack Brick Garden Border
Making a dry stack garden border is easy. Especially if someone else digs the trench first! Something I recommend by the way – always try to get someone else to do the dirty digging work.
- Dig a shallow trench bordering the garden bed that is as wide as your brick or stone.
- Place a shovelful of sand in the trench and tamp it down w/ either a tamper (you can rent one of these) or a brick. This will allow bricks to shift a bit when the ground freezes and thaws in cold weather without the border falling over (guess how I know this?)
- Place the first row of bricks in the trench. Check that they are even height with a level or against a length of string tied between two temporary stakes in the ground. Add or remove a bit of sand underneath the brick if you need to adjust the height.
- Offset the second row of bricks from the first row of bricks. Use a half of brick on the ends to keep the wall nice and flush.
- Keep on stacking rows of bricks until you’ve reached the desired height or run out of bricks.
This is an excellent first step in turning my nasty clay soil into a functioning raised flower bed.
I love the look of the well worn brick. I also like that it came from a place that’s been in Husband’s family for at least 50 years, maybe longer. I like that I helped keep something useful from cluttering up a landfill. Best of all I like the price – free!
If you don't have access to old bricks, consider installing one of the easy brick garden borders below!