How to use treated pine for garden edging

Treated pine is less expensive because it grows faster than hardwoods and can be easily cut into boards and planks of various shapes and sizes.

The difference in cost means that treated pine is more affordable for DIY projects.

Are you thinking about using treated pine for your garden edging project?

Read on as we cover all you need to know.

Is treated pine good for garden edging?

Treated pine sleepers are generally a good option for garden edging. They provide a strong border for your garden, which helps it stay put.

As long you choose the right level of treatment, your timber will be resistant to rot from exposure to moisture and will also be termite resistant.

What type of treated pine should you use for garden edging?

The next step is choosing a treated pine that will suit your requirements.

Treated pine is given a hazard rating based on the level of treatment it has undergone.

The ratings are H1, H2, H3, H4, H5, and H6. The higher the hazard rating, the more durable it is against moisture and insects.

For garden edging where the wood will be in contact with soil and water for prolonged periods of time, choose timber with a hazard rating of H4 or above (H4 timber is the best option).

H3-rated timber is not designed to be in contact with soil, making it unsuitable for garden edging.

You should also avoid using H2 or H1 rated timber outdoors because these are only meant to be used indoors as they aren’t able to withstand exposure to water.

Is it safe to use treated wood for vegetable gardens?

CCA treated timber contains arsenic. As such, many people prefer not to use CCA treated timber for any purpose where it will come into contact with food. However, CSIRO assigns a low risk, based on their research.

Using ACQ treated timber around vegetable gardens is less of a concern as it does not contain arsenic.

However, for peace of mind, consider using untreated hardwood instead, if you don’t want to worry about anything leaching from the timber into your soil or vegetables.

Alternatively, you could use treated timber and install a lining material as a barrier.

Keep in mind that root vegetables such as carrots, potatoes, and beetroots are more at risk of absorbing toxins from the soil than above-ground growing fruit and vegetables.

How to Use Treated Pine for Edging

Here are the basic steps for installing your treated pine garden edging:

  1. Measure up your garden and determine what size pieces of timber you need.
  2. Cut your timber or order it pre-cut from your local supplier.
  3. Use a shovel to dig a channel around the edge of your garden. Keep in mind that the channel should be more narrow than your timber.
  4. Insert your timber into the channel and use a mallet to bang them into place. Check they are level.
  5. You can use wooden stakes as appropriate to keep the treated timber upright.
  6. Use nails to secure your timber in place. You can also use timber glue if you would prefer to not have visible nails or screws.
  7. Once you have secured your edging in place, fill any gaps between it and your lawn with wood chips or mulch for a natural effect. Alternatively, you can fill the gap with soil if you want the garden right up to the edge.