A berm is a good way to add visual interest to a landscape, but this mounded bed is also practical. It can provide a wind break, privacy, or protection from draining water. If you like neat and tidy edges on your beds, consider the berm borders you’ll create before designing and building one.
Materials for Berm Edging
Edging a berm is useful for more than just aesthetics; it can reduce spillage of mulch into the grass and catch any eroding soil that runs off the berm. An edge is not strictly necessary, though, and if you don’t overdo the angle of the berm and add plants that will hold in the soil erosion, this shouldn’t be a big issue. For tidiness and a neat look though, here are some materials to consider for edging a berm:
- Plants. Plants can serve as a natural edge on any bed or berm. Use something that grows low and dense to create a small hedge. Try alyssum, barrenwort, thrift, sedum, or smaller varieties of hostas.
- Rocks. Another natural option is to go with rocks or stone. You may need a lot, as packing them in tight looks best. If you don’t have access to some that you can collect on your property, using all rocks can get costly.
- Bricks. Any garden or home improvement store will give you several options for brick edging. This can look attractive and allows you to choose what you like best for your yard.
- Plastic or metal. Those stores will also have black plastic or metal edging. These provide clean lines and are more minimal than the above options.
How to Make Borders for Berms
When making edges for berms, it’s important to plan ahead. Measure the circumference of the berm and make sure you get the right amount of edging material. For any type of edging, the first step is to dig a trench around the berm. The depth will depend on the material you’re using and how far you want it sunk into the ground. Take your time with this step, creating the shape and lines that you want because it will be more difficult to change later.
Once you have the lines you like, start placing the edging material. Putting in rocks, plants, or bricks is pretty straightforward but be sure to fit the bricks and stone tightly together and to put plants closer to each other than you normally would.
For metal and plastic edging, it may take more effort to line it up just right. The material should come with stakes. Use these behind the edge and in the berm to hold your edging upright. Once it’s all straight and supported, backfill with soil and mulch.
The project of edging a berm can be time-consuming but worthwhile if you want to keep your beds and yards strictly separate. Take your time and do it right. One mistake can mean tearing out a whole section and starting from scratch.