How to Edge A Lawn With An Edger

By PropertyClub Team
Jul 20th 2022
We all like to take pride in our lawns. But even if you water your lawn every day and aerate it regularly, your lawn could still look sloppy and unimpressive if it isn't edged properly. Let's break down how to edge a lawn using regular tools.

hash-markHow To Edge a Lawn

1. Mow Your Lawn

Before you can start to edge your lawn, you'll need to mow your grass. By mowing your lawn, you'll know how short or tall you need to trim the grass at the edge of your lawn to ensure a uniform look. A good rule of thumb is to never cut more than one-third of all your lawn's grass blades at a time.  

2. Plan Your Edging Path

Next, plan out your edging path. Use instruction tape or even rope to guide your process and make sure you don't over-edge your lawn by accident. You can alternatively follow the sidewalk's routes if you are edging your lawn primarily along concrete or stone pathways.

3. Choose Your Edging Tool

Now that your lawn is prepped, it's time to choose your preferred edging tool. You'll need to decide between a manual edger or a power edger, both with their own set of advantages and disadvantages. Manual edgers offer more control and are cheaper but they also take more effort to use. On the other hand, power edgers will let you finish edging your lawn faster, and are easier to operate. 

Be sure to put on plenty of safety gear, like sturdy gloves and safety glasses to protect your eyes from dirt and sprayed grass. You may also consider wearing pants to protect your shins for the same reason.

4. Start With the Perimeter

It's best to start by edging the perimeter of your lawn. Just be sure that you know if there are any plumbing pipes or electrical wires in your way. If you're edging with an electrical trimmer, make sure that the tool's deflector shield faces away from your body. With manual edging, just drive the edging tool straight into the ground. Make sure that your manual edger is completely straight and move in slow, careful lines.

You should walk on the sidewalk or other hard surface next to your lawn as you edge. Move your arms carefully and in straight lines to prevent you from over edging your lawn. Try to cut about 2 inches deep.

5. Touch Up Any Messy Areas and Clean Up

After edging your lawn, go back and check for any jagged or uneven areas. You may need to touch up certain areas of your lawn with a manual edging tool, like shears.

After checking your work, all you need to do is clean up any debris. Use a broom or another brush to get rid of grass, dirt, soil, and other debris from your driveway or concrete sidewalks.

hash-markWhat Is the Best Way To Edge a Lawn?

It's always recommended that you edge your lawn using a dedicated edging tool, such as a string edger (which is a kind of power tool) or a pair of edging shears or other manual tools.

You should carefully maintain your lawn, plan out your edging path, then use your tools carefully and slowly to avoid making imprecise cuts. A more detailed, step-by-step breakdown is below.

hash-markWhen Should You Edge Your Lawn?

You should try to edge your lawn at least once per year. The ideal time for most people is late June, as this is after peak grass growing season from April to May. This means your edging work will last much longer, or at least until the next big growing season.

Of course, this may be different based on your environment and the ideal growing season for your lawn's grass species.

hash-markWhat Is the Best Tool for Edging a Lawn?

There are many great tools for edging a lawn, and the best tool for the job will depend on what you need done. String edgers are best for large lawns as they let you work faster while manual edging rools are best for small touch-ups. Here are some of the different types of edging tools you can use.

  • String edgers, which can also be called trimmers, are relatively lightweight power tools. You can find them in corded, cordless, gas, and electric varieties. They utilize a spinning head with a monofilament string to cut through lawn grass and weeds.
  • Meanwhile, manual edgers come in a few different subtypes themselves. Landscaping edgers, for example, use half-moon steel blades at their bottoms. They can be particularly good for getting rid of grass or sod that grows over your driveway or for getting rid of turf near a flower bed.
  • Dual wheel rotary edgers use serrated blades attached to a single side of a rubber will. Then you can use these edgers to get rid of grass that grows over your driveway or concrete walkway – the other side of the wheel rolls passively along your grass.
  • Edging shears are manual tools that are best used for touching up your edging job. They remove grass in single cuts, one chop at a time.

Ultimately, any of these edging tools can work for your purposes. But string edgers and other power tools are better for larger edging jobs since they can cover more terrain in a shorter amount of time compared to manual edging tools.

On the flip side, manual edging tools (and especially edging shears) are great for touching up your job or for precision work. The best idea is often to use one electric tool for the majority of your edging work, then touch things up or finish the job with a manual edger at the end.

hash-markCan I Edge My Lawn Without an Edger?

Technically, yes. You can edge your lawn by creating an edge with your shovel and using a lawn trimmer to very carefully get rid of any grass that sticks up out of place. However, this is less precise than using either a power or manual edger tool and isn't always recommended.

For the best results, using a dedicated edging tool is ideal. And edgers aren't that expensive anyway, with most manual edgers costing between $20 and $50, while power edgers cost around $100, on average. 

hash-markEdging a Lawn Bottom Line

Edging your lawn is an important part of regular yard maintenance, that is relatively easy to do yourself as long as you invest in a proper edging tool. Depending on your preferences, you can buy a manual edger for as little as $20 or a power edger for around $100. With a good edger and a bit of hard work, you'll be able to edge your yard and make it look fantastic, giving your house incredible curb appeal.