How to Edge a Lawn

Here's this weekend's super-simple DIY: Give your lawn a polished look by creating a sharp, professional edge along walks, driveways, and planting beds. All you need is a single piece of equipment: a cordless string trimmer. But don't just roll out of the hammock and head out to edge your lawn. You've got to gear up first, with boots, pants, and goggles to protect yourself from sticks and stones the trimmer might kick up.

Of course, the best edging in the world won't mean a darned thing unless the lawn itself looks lush, green, and fine. Help it reach its top-notch potential by using

Scotts® Turf Builder® lawn foods and Scotts® weed control products.

Here's how to edge your lawn like a pro in 5 simple steps:

1. Mow First

By mowing first, you know how short to trim grass along edges and will be less likely to scalp those areas, giving rise to bare or weedy patches.

2. Flip the Trimmer

To use a string trimmer to edge a lawn, flip the trimmer head 180 degrees, so that it's vertical. Keep that deflector shield toward your body.

3. Follow the Path

When edging along walks or driveways, walk on the hard surface as you edge. Keep the trim line in the small space between the grass and hard surface. If grass has overgrown the walk or drive, don't whack it all at once. Cut it back a little at a time by working the string against the hard surface.

4. Control the Trimmer

For the straightest edge, keep your string trimmer level and in the same position as you trim. Focus on keeping your arms in place and moving your body slowly and deliberately—that's what the pros do.

5. Move-in the Right Direction

Most trimmers spin string clockwise. Take advantage of this by moving left to right as you trim. This will eject trimmings away from walkways and beds and back onto the lawn, so you don't have to waste a bunch of time cleaning up afterward. 

One last thing—and don't skip this part: Be sure to use a stiff brush to thoroughly clean the trimmer immediately after you use it, before grass bits dry and harden. That way, the equipment will be ready to go next time your edges need a touch-up.