Recommedation for border edging in a tropical look garden?

2 May 2008
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United Kingdom
I've another question and would welcome some creative ideas if anyone has some !

I'm redoing my garden from scratch and will be planting out frost hardy tropical plants and plants that aren't tropical but look tropical and that don't grow too tall . Think palms, ferns, grasses interspered with brightly coloured seasonal bedding plants and bulbs etc.

My garden furniture is a sort of rich mahogany. I am painting the wooden fencing white. My accent colour is rich darkish blue, which is found on my garden table parasol and seat cushions plus various pots.

I am trying to figure out what now to choose for edging my raised flower beds. Log roll springs to mind, I would stain it to match the furniture, but it seems to get some bad press. I obviously want something that will take the pressure of 2 CURVED flower beds which will each be around 20 foot long and 3 foot wide in the middle (I am doing half moons on each side of the garden so the beginnin and end parts are narrower than the middle)

I'm just wondering if log roll will tie in? I'm not interested in brick or concrete or sleepers- I need something that can work with the curved design.

I was planning to place decorative pebbles on top of the beds by the way, probably the medium sized kind which come in a mixture of light natural tones)

The area where my table will be at the rear of the garden will be covered with dark blue slate chippings to set off the blue in the pots, furnishings an flowers.

So what would YOU go for where edging is concerned?!

ps) I should mention that whatever gets put in, I will be doing it myself, so it must not involve cement !
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i have log roll.

only thing i would say is it does not give support on its own very well, si i "whaked in" some narrower short poles in the front every 18 inches
when you say "smaller poles", do you mean bits of smaller log roll or something else? what height was your log roll as if i did go for this option I'd use one that was about 12 inches or higher so it was embedded 6 inches into the ground...wouldn't that be enough to support things?
log roll does not last very long and in a heavy clay soil which stays damp will rot through very quickly
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I seem to be a bit limited with what else to choose for a curvy border. I don't like the look of bricks, sleepers won't turn corners, I hate the plasticky stuff and don't want a border made from planks of wood either. I could use real logs but they won't be the same size and would be hell to try and lodge in the ground ?
I've thought of big stones but given my flower bed will be raised by 6 inches or so on top of about 14 inches of dug over trench filled with new soil, I need something to lodge in the ground 6 inches for support AND then sit a further 6-8 inches above ground to contain the raised bed....where can i get stones that big and what about the gaps in between stones as stones won't fit together properly? won't earth leak out ?

I can't do a double layer of stones without using cement unless I used flat slabs and did a dry laid wall ? Thing is, I can't have the material used come out width ways more than 6 inches else it will eat into too much of my flower bed space

How long would log roll last in my clay soil ? It's not my house, it's rented and I don't imagine being here more than another 3 yrs
TBH it was some small bits of timber i had laying around, yes i know it will rot but I assume it will take a few years, by which time the log roll will rot too, so i will have to change the lot anyway
Why not use bamboo instead of logs, either dig a narrow trench and set individual lengths into it then backfill or buy the bamboo on a roll although this looks a bit too uniform to me.

I'd do with decent sized rocks and individual lengths of logs, bit like whats round my pond

Cut lengths of sleeper set vertically will go round curves like the center pic here or here

Hi Jason
I considered babmoo and like you thought the stuff on the roll too uniform , but buying individual canes and chopping them up is just as pricey, if not more. I will have two 25-30 foot long borders so I'm erring on the side of sourcing free rocks/boulders from the beach or wherever. I thought of real logs - I have a source to get them free but they are massive and it would be so much work for my partner to get them all down to a similar enough size with the chainsaw. I note you have smaller, whole round logs which I like and I thought of those too, but if I were to just use those I'm not sure how to join them together and am thinking they would need to be , like the stuff on those log rolls is, just so they stick together and don't bend over ?

Hmm, I think rocks as they are so heavy and can work the curves

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