Edging your landscape creates a crisp, finished look. Beds and borders seem to sparkle when there's a clear edge between the planting area and your lawn, driveway, sidewalk, or another landscape bed.
Traditional edging, such as brick, stone, or steel, does a fantastic job of keeping plants in the bed while keeping the lawn out, but it isn't always attractive. Fix that with plants!
Alyssum. Compact and fast-growing, alyssum is an annual in most areas. It sends up dense, tiny fragrant white flowers (varieties with pink, lavender, and cream flowers are available, too) and, if cut back, will bloom fairly continuously throughout the growing season. Zones 5-9 Learn more about sweet alyssum.
Barrenwort. A top pick for edging shaded landscape beds, barrenwort is a perky little perennial that blooms in spring with spidery flowers in shades of pink, purple, orange, yellow, and white. Many varieties have attractive foliage that turns bronzy in autumn. Zones 5-9 Learn more about barrenwort.
Bloody geranium. It may sound a little scary, but bloody geranium picked up its colorful moniker from the bold red shades its leaves change to in autumn. It also blooms in late spring and sporadically throughout early autumn. Bloody geranium is a beautiful edging plant for sunny or lightly shaded spots. Zones 4-8 Learn more about perennial geraniums.
Japanese forestgrass. One of the few grasses that thrives in shade, Japanese forestgrass forms compact mounds of gracefully arching foliage. It's an amazing accent along the edges of a bed or border. Zones 5-9 Learn more about Japanese forestgrass.
Lady's mantle. Beautiful lady's mantle has scallop-shape leaves covered in fine hairs. It gives the foliage a glistening effect in early morning or evening light and also catches dewdrops. Lady's mantle blooms in early summer with clusters of chartreuse flowers and makes for an elegant landscape edge. Zones 4-7 Learn more about lady's mantle.
Sedum. Clumping, upright sedum varieties such as 'Matrona' add fall flair to the landscape and create a neat edge for taller plants behind them. Most sedum varieties are attractive to butterflies and hold up well to heat and drought. Zones 3-10 Learn more about sedum.
Thrift. Thrift is a delightful perennial that offers tidy mounds of grassy foliage and little rounded clusters of bright pink or white flowers from late spring to early summer. It loves full sun and well-drained soil. Zones 3-9 Learn more about thrift.