How do I stop my lawn growing into my garden beds?

How do I stop my lawn growing into my garden beds?

Step 1 – Remove surface vegetation.

First, remove as much vegetation as possible by hand. If it’s a cool-season grass-type weed like rye grass or fescue it won’t have any runners, so you can pull the grass up roots and all and it won’t grow back.


Warm-season grasses, on the other hand – Couch, Kikuyu, Zoysia, and Buffalo – have an underground rhizome (“runner”) system that makes pulling them up more difficult (and is the reason why they’re so good at invading the garden in the first place!). This rhizome system can even tunnel under edging and pop up in neighbouring beds. For grasses with runner systems, start by manually cutting the grass down to ground height using a garden knife or hand scythe.

Step 2 – Kill off the underground runner system.

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Once you have removed most of the plant, it’s time to address the underground part of the grass, and there’s a couple of ways to go about this.

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One option is to use a non-selective herbicide such as glyphosate (‘Roundup’), being careful not to spray any on plants you want to keep.

Autumn is the ideal time of year to apply herbicides, as the lawn growth has slowed from its peak but is not yet completely dormant, meaning it will still take up the herbicide through the leaf. Depending on the grass type and the amount, you may well need several spray applications. Be vigilant and ready with a spray bottle to quickly knock over any new invasions as they appear.

A more environmentally friendly option is to block light to the area with a covering such as mulch, cardboard, or newspaper. This can help smother grass growth, though you’ll likely still need to spray a few new shoots as they appear.

Once you’ve achieved good control of existing lawn invasions, you’re ready for the next challenge – keeping it from re-entering!  

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Step 3 – Block the lawn from invading.

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Establishing a border (“edging”) is the easiest way to keep your lawn from creeping into your garden beds. Hard borders can be made from virtually anything, from store-bought bands of plastic or metal edging that push part-way into the ground through to natural rocks. Whatever material you use, make sure the barrier is sunk deep enough to prevent grass invading beneath the surface.

Another physical border option is the spade edge, or “English border”. It is basically a shallow ditch dug between the lawn and flower bed. It is quite easy to dig out and maintain, and makes it easy to spot weeds and grass runners so that they can be either trimmed or sprayed immediately.

Your choice of edging will depend on many factors, particularly aesthetics and budget. Ideally you should aim for edging that allows you to easily use a lawn-edger or whipper-snipper along the margin. This way, you can easily tend to your lawn edges at the same time as mowing for a neat, clean finish you can be proud of.

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Sticking with one of Lawn Solutions Australia’s proven turf varieties and using one of Lawn Solutions Australia’s preferred herbicides can help keep your lawn looking outstanding. Our lawns look so good that you may even decide to rid yourself of garden beds altogether, solving all your lawn invasion problems once and for all!

For any further information on your lawn please give our friendly staff a call on +61404532026 or email