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My front flower-bed is separated from my lawn by a row of edging stones about four inches tall half-buried in the soil. Unfortunately, between being hit by the lawn-mower a few times (oops!), being in a climate prone to frost-heaving and probably some settling action, much of the edge has fallen over into the lawn.

I'm looking to re-set the border, but I feel like if I just dig a new trench and re-bury the stones I'm likely to end up right back here in another year or three, even if I do stop bumping them with the lawnmower so much. Is there anything to be done to reduce the amount of frost-heave/settling problems so that I can fix this once and be done with it?

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You can use metal edging which is supposed to resist frost heave. Steel rusts into a nice patina look, but will last about 40 years. Then you can look at doing it again. Aluminum doesn't rust but is not as strong if you know you're going to ding it now and then.

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IMPE, the way to have a 2" above the ground border that stays put is to have 8-10 inches of border, most of which is buried. Ideally you'd take it all the way below frostline, but that's VERY impractical where I have and do live (48" or so.)

To do that with your edging stones that are only 4" tall, I guess you could pour a concrete foundation and mortar the stones to the top of it.

As for hitting it with the mower,

  • A: I'm unclear how you think hitting it with the mower causes it to fall INTO the lawn, since presumably the mower is on the lawn

and

  • B: it should stick up above ground less than the mower height so that you can mow over it without damage to mower or edging.

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