Q: Can you tell me the best way to prevent bermuda grass from getting into my flower beds? Can you recommend a barrier of metal, plastic, etc?
A: Landscape architect Bruce Holliday (www.landscapeplansplus.com) says the very best material is brick edging in concrete with a brick soldier course. He warns that it is expensive but very effective and distinctive looking. In his experience site-formed concrete curbing is not effective since bermudagrass can grow right under it. A less expensive barrier is a four inch wide by four inch deep trench around flower beds. This requires weekly edging with a blade edger, not a string trimmer. If you use the trench method, be aware that if the trench runs downhill it can act as a drainage ditch, and can erode over time. Metal edging may work but plastic edging is usually a waste of money because it is so easily damaged by trimmers and mowers.