Garden paths, in the creation of which each owner of a suburban area invests a lot of time and money, will be short-lived and unfinished without a border. A garden curb is necessary to protect the paths from pollution, to prevent them from spreading and overgrowing with grass, to prevent soil erosion and maintain a given path geometry. In addition, the border often performs a purely decorative function, and sometimes the fences of garden paths and flower beds are made the same, maintaining the general style of the site. The border for garden paths can be made using ready-made purchased materials, or it can be created from improvised items. There are plenty to choose from.
# 1. Plastic border
A plastic border can be called a universal solution for any site, since it can be both completely discreet and inconspicuous, and decorative. The main advantages of plastic garden path curb:
low price, which has become the main factor in widespread popularity;
- resistance to temperature extremes, frost, moisture, chemicals that may be included in the formulations for spraying the beds adjacent to the path;
- the ability to fix a garden path of any geometry;
- low weight, which simplifies transportation and installation;
- good indicators of strength and durability;
- ease of installation, because labor-intensive work will not have to be carried out;
- minimal care;
- variety of colors, shapes, sizes.
There is only one drawback – it is a synthetic material, but there will be no harm to humans and grown plants. In terms of strength and durability, plastic is naturally inferior to concrete and stone.
Plastic curbs, presented at the moment in building stores, can be divided into the following types:
Installation of plastic curbs is a simple process and, as a rule, involves the use of special anchor pins. The latter should be different for different types of soil: wooden ones are suitable for soft soil, metal ones for stony ones. It is better not to use a plastic border for framing stone paths.
# 2. Concrete curb
In most areas, garden paths are framed with a concrete curb. It owes such popularity to its strength characteristics and relative cheapness, as well as the possibility of making it by hand. A concrete curb is a great option for framing paths made of concrete, stone, paving slabs, paving stones and asphalt.
durability and strength;
- resistance to high and low temperatures, moisture;
- neat appearance;
- low cost;
- easy care;
- the possibility of self-production.
Among the disadvantages are large weight and a meager selection of ready-made curbs, as well as relatively laborious work on preparing the soil for the installation of such a curb. Finished products are sold in several standard sizes, they can be laid on the edge or on the wide side. If the size, shape or appearance of the finished concrete blocks is not satisfactory, you can make the border yourself using ready-made or homemade forms. You will need to prepare a solution and pour it into the blanks, and after waiting for complete curing, use the resulting product for its intended purpose. Concrete can be dyed in bulk in the desired color or decorated with pebbles, shells, small stones, glass, prints to give a boring material a unique look.
A concrete curb, bought or made by hand, has a lot of weight, so the preparatory work should be given due attention – the durability of the structure depends on them. You will need to dig a trench about 20 cm deep, fill it with rubble, tamp it and fill it with sand. The latter is poured with water and also thoroughly rammed, after which a cement mortar is poured into which the elements of the curb are immersed. With the help of a rubber hammer, they are leveled to the required level, the remains of cement can be poured into the joints. A concrete curb can also be installed in parallel with the creation of a garden path.
Another option for arranging a concrete curb is pouring concrete using formwork. The process resembles the preparation of a strip foundation, it saves time, but the border obtained in this way will have low decorative qualities. Work begins with digging a trench of the required depth and width, then the formwork is installed. For its manufacture, a polished board will work, but if you plan to create a path with bends, then it is better to use plastic, MDF or steel. The formwork is fixed with pegs, and then filled with cement mortar prepared in a concrete mixer or independently using any suitable container. Now it remains to level the surface, and after the concrete has hardened, you can remove the formwork and cut expansion joints in increments of 100-150 cm to prevent cracking. While it cures, the concrete can be decorated with pebbles, ceramic tiles or mosaics. Such curbs can be used for fill, asphalt or made from scrap materials.
No. 3. Metal border
One of the strongest and most durable borders is metal. It can be made of stainless steel, aluminum or copper, and can be in the form of strips or rods. The belts, like their plastic counterpart, serve as an invisible walkway fence. They are buried in the ground by at least 10 cm, from above they can rise above the surface level by no more than 2 cm. The metal strips retain the shape of the path, prevent the germination of grass, while remaining invisible. A fence made of metal rods is more of a decorative function: forged elements of a fence, for example, can have common features with forged curbs of paths, allowing the site to be perceived as something harmonious and made in the same style.
- high strength and durability;
- resistance to a wide range of temperatures;
- excellent retention of the track shape;
- easy installation;
- the ability to use for the design of winding paths.
Among the minuses is only the price, therefore, if necessary, to equip the curbs invisible to the eye, the choice often falls on plastic.
No. 4. Wood border
Wood can be used to create paths in one of a variety of options: boards, bars, pegs, or saw cuts. Ready-made curbs can be found in the store, they are easy to make yourself, and you can even use the remnants of lumber. A wood curb is best suited for fencing wood paths or loose bark paths.
- excellent appearance and a huge number of design options;
- environmental friendliness;
- the ability to use wood left over from the main construction, which allows you to create a pretty curb with minimal costs;
- uncomplicated installation.
A wooden curb will do an excellent job with its direct functions, but its main disadvantage is its low durability. The tree must be treated with protective compounds before installation, and then regularly during the operation of the curb, but it is still unlikely to last more than 10 years. Installation will require minimal effort: make a trench, arrange a drainage cushion and lay a waterproofing material.
Separately, it is worth noting wicker borders, which are made from vines, but they perform mainly a decorative role, so it is better to combine them with plastic or metal tape in order to preserve the shape of the track.
No. 5. Brick border
A border made of clinker or facing bricks will be an excellent option for decorating paths made of stone, tiles, paving stones and all the same brick.
- strength and durability;
- environmental friendliness;
- resistance to temperature extremes and moisture;
- resistance to sunlight, mold and mildew.
The brick can be installed on the edge, inclined, horizontally or in any other way. It is better to lay it on a cement mortar, and in order to get a border with the same height at all points, you can first pull the rope at the required level, and when laying it, be equal to it.
No. 6. Stone curb
Natural stone is one of the most suitable materials for the execution of a border. It has high aesthetic properties and copes with the functions assigned to the garden border better than many of its counterparts. The advantages include record-breaking durability, high strength, resistance to all atmospheric, as well as mechanical stress. Each type of stone has a unique color and texture, so it will not be difficult to choose an option that suits the style of the site.
For the arrangement of the curb, you can use inexpensive sandstone, limestone or shell rock, or more expensive marble or granite. In any case, a stone curb will be a beautiful decoration for a path made of tiles, stone and even concrete. Among the disadvantages of this type of curb are high weight and high price. To make such a stylish design of garden paths available to a wider circle of people, some manufacturers offer an artificial stone designed specifically for arranging paths.
Installation of a stone curb is a simple and quick process. In addition to digging a pit, creating a drainage layer and tamping it, it is necessary to use agrofibre so that grass does not grow through the stones later. The stones are installed close to each other, and a smaller fraction can be used in the gaps.
No. 7. “Green” border
The path border can be decorated with plants. It will look very beautiful, but when deciding on such an option, it is worth remembering that you will need to make great efforts both at the stage of creating a border and in the process of maintaining it to maintain its proper appearance. “Green” border can serve as a decoration for paths made of stone or gravel. It is planted according to the same principle as a hedge, but it is better to select plants of a small height.
Plants such as boxwood and cotoneaster are commonly used; lavender, berserk, sage, cloves and some others are also suitable. The height of such a border should not be more than 30 cm, and the width is made in the region of 25-30 cm. Care for a “live” border should be constant, as well as for all plants in the garden. It will have to be regularly watered, fertilized and pruned.
No. 8. Border from scrap materials
If imagination works, you can get by with a minimal investment and build a practical and pretty path for the path from the most common objects that many of us throw away. Old plastic and glass bottles, tires, remnants of slate or tiles can be used – there are a lot of options, but the main thing is not to forget that the border must cope with its main functions and be more or less durable.
It is better to decide what the curbs for garden paths on the site will be made of, even before the construction of the paths themselves, at the stage of their planning. Some types of curb will be much easier to install in parallel with the arrangement of the path itself.