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5 Unique Lawn Edging Ideas

5 Unique Lawn Edging Ideas

Edgings divide the different areas of the garden or the lawn and help restrain plants, soil or mulch from spilling out onto the grass. They can also guide feet and the wheels of wheel barrows or other vehicles away from plants that can be accidentally damaged. A homeowner who’s a bit bored with lawn edging that’s made of plain, uninspiring bricks or masonry has many other edging options to choose from. Here are five unique ways to edge a lawn:

#1- Gabion Wall
A gabion wall is a type of cage made of wire into which cobbles, stones or pebbles are poured to hold back the earth. A properly built gabion wall is very sturdy and strong. It also makes an unusual and attractive lawn edging, especially if the raised bed kept back by the caged rocks is planted with interesting specimens such as succulents, ornamental grasses or ground covers.

#2- Sleepers of Different Heights
These are salvaged railroad ties. They can be cut to different heights and installed vertically along the edge of the lawn. A gardener can also use concrete blocks, Belgian blocks or chiseled stone as sleepers. Something similar is a palisade made of wood, metal or mortar. The difference is that the elements of the palisade are all the same size. Installing sleepers or palisades is a job of work, for the gardener needs a lot of them, and they need to be buried deep and stabilized with 2 x 4s or cables. Only the top one third of the sleeper or palisade is going to be above ground. Moreover, wood elements need to be treated to avoid rot and insect damage.

#3- Fallen Tree Branches
These may take time to gather, but when the gardener has a good number of tree branches they can weave them together to form another sort of retaining wall that edges the lawn. Like the gabion wall, the area behind the woven branches can be planted with interesting plants and flowers.

#4- Water
Some enterprising gardeners edge a sloping lawn with a water feature. The water is allowed to trickle down a brick lined canal into a pool at the bottom of the lawn. The feature may be deep enough to accommodate plants that thrive in running water such as watercress. These plants are set in the water in special, perforated pots.

#5- Hubcaps
Again, it may take some time to collect enough hubcaps for a lawn edging, but they are certainly different and will be the talk of the neighborhood.

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Everything You Need to Know About Proper Blade Maintenance

One of the most important parts of your lawn mower is its blade. The blade is the part that ensures you get the most efficient cut for your lawn. A dull blade can leave your grass with a brown tint and more susceptible to disease. Practice the tips below regularly to ensure your mower blade always stays sharp for the perfect cut.

Sharpen The Blade Twice Every Year
You can do this at home with a file or bench grinder. To start you want to disconnect the spark plug wire. This is just a safety precaution to ensure the mower doesn't accidentally start while you are working with the blade. Once the plug wire is off flip the mower on its side.

You can use a specialty blade removal tool, or simply a wrench with a small block holding the blade still while you remove the bolt. Once the bolt is removed and the blade is off you want to inspect it for any major damages. If there are no major damages it's time to use your file or bench grinder to sharpen that blade.

All strokes should be evenly dispersed across all sides of the blade. This will ensure an even balance. Once sharpened you will need to check the blade for balance. This can be easily done with a cheap plastic blade balancer you can pick up at the local hardware store. If your blade is unbalanced it could cause premature wear on the bearings inside of the mower. Once your blade is balanced simply reinstall the blade, flip the mower over, and reconnect the spark plug wire.

Clean The Blade After Each Use
Taking a couple minutes after mowing your lawn to clean your mower is a great maintenance tip that prevents problems with rust and corrosion overtime. Using a wire brush or a gloved hand, remove any excess clumping or any debris stuck around the blade. This step is always a great habit to have so you can identify any major defects or a broken blade you didn't notice while mowing.

Inspect The Blade For Cracks, Nicks, And Dents
As discussed above, this should be performed at the end of each lawn mowing session you perform. Once the blade is cleaned off look over it. See if there are any noticeable cracks, dents, or nicks. Small chips in the blade happen over time and can be smoothed out at the time of sharpening. This inspection time will also enlighten you about any major bend in the blade that you need to take care of before your next mow.

Replace Bent, Dented, and Worn Blades
You can notice major dents during your routine checks after each mow. Slight bends you may not notice until you remove the blade for sharpening. It's important to note that bent blades should never be used. These greatly increase the risk of the blade getting bent further and breaking during mowing.

You should never try to straighten out a bent blade. The straightening process will weaken the structural integrity of the blade and greatly increase the risk of the blade breaking in the future. You don't want a piece of the metal blade being thrown out of the grass chute and possibly hit someone or damaging your property.

Cool The Blade Intermittently During Sharpening
Friction caused by the sharpening process can drastically increase the temperature of the metal blade. If the blade becomes too hot under the friction it can start to weaken, making it more susceptible to breaking. Make sure to take breaks every so often to cool the blade off.

Having a sharp lawn mower blade means a healthier and more perfectly cut lawn. Be sure to set aside the time to properly maintain your mower blades.