A manual lawn edger tool is an essential lawncare tool to add to your set. Clean edges give your lawn a professional finish without a large monetary investment. There are many types of manual edger tools to consider. This article offers eight manual lawn edger reviews, complete with the pros and cons to consider before you select the best lawn edger for you.
Maintaining clean edge lines on your lawn is the difference between your standard neighborhood lawn and a professional-looking lawn. There are many edging tools available to level-up your lawn care techniques.
Manual Lawn Edger Tools: Our Top Picks
Ranging in price from $30 to $70, these manual edger tools are affordable and easy to use. Most manual lawn edger tools resemble a flattened shovel and are designed to cut through your lawn using manpower and a rotating movement to create clean lines. We will also cover manual rotary edger tools which have an edged-wheel that can be pushed along a line to create a longer edge cut.
Both types of manual lawn edger tools are reviewed in the selection below.
- LANDSCAPING EDGER: Cuts trenches and creates clean, finished lawn edges along driveways, lawns and sidewalks
For most jobs, the AMES 2917200 Saw-Tooth Border Edger is the best manual lawn edger tool available. The large, semi-circle blade easily rotates from side-to-side to create clean lines, and the t-grip handle is wide enough to accommodate any grip while providing the leverage needed to rotate the tool effectively.
This tool can be used to cut edges along straight walkways or around curved garden beds. The saw-tooth edge is strong enough to break through rocky or dry soil, providing for versatility in use.
- Large t-grip handle provides ample leverage
- Semi-circle, saw-tooth blade cuts large lines to cover large areas
- Accommodates straight and curved cuts easily
- Large blade may be difficult to edge small beds or intricate shapes
- Requires quite a bit of strength if you plan to edge a large area
The Bully Tools Edger is a commercial-grade tool built with steel that is made to handle even the toughest lawn conditions. The rounded blade easily rotates from left-to-right to make a straight edge cut. The t-bar style handle makes operating the tool intuitive and comfortable.
- Extra thick 12 gauge steel blade made to stand tough soil conditions
- Large flattened top supports the foot to push the tool into the ground
- T-bar style handle makes operating the tool intuitive
- Blade can bend in very hard soil
The Radius Garden 206 PRO Stainless Steel Edger has a half-moon, stainless steel blade that is built to be durable. The circular handle offers an alternative to the t-bar, accommodating a variety of holding positions.
- Resin-encased carbon shaft and stainless steel blade are rust-resistant
- Wide step for foot-powered digging
- Circular handle may better fit more petite users
- Blade comes unsharpened
- Hollow handle can become waterlogged
- 48-inch north american ash, lacquered handle for strength and durability
The Truper Tru Tough Rotary Edger offers one of the largest blades on the market. This large blade makes this the perfect tool for long, straight cut edges. The rotary style enables this edger to tackle serious edging tasks in a short amount of time. The rotating wheel is sharp and applies equal pressure on all sides.
- Great for use along straight edges, like sidewalk or driveway
- Can tackle large jobs with limited manpower
- Works best to maintain lawns, not to do first-time edges
- Does not rotate well to accommodate curved flower beds or shaped edges
- Clear-coated gray steel heads can rust
- Ideal for edging walkways and gardens
The long shaft on the Fiskars 38.5 Inch Steel Edger is designed for taller individuals but is lightweight enough for anyone to use. The steel plate maintains a sharp edge and comes sharpened straight out of the package. This edger can be used along walkways, driveways, and flowerbeds.
- Accommodates taller individuals
- Steel plate is sharp and maintains sharpness over many uses
- Can be used for all edges, including flowerbeds
- Ergonomic for anyone who has trouble kneeling or bending
- Plastic handle can be flimsy and is prone to cracking
- Not the best choice for first time edging or large yards
- Step edger tool that is a clean, quiet and low-maintenance alternative to a gas-powered edger to maintain sleek edges in your garden
The Radius Garden 25602 Edger is built to last and to be comfortable during use. With a wide footstep and rounded handle, this manual edger can be used by people of all shapes and sizes. Its carbon steel edge is sharp and rust-resistant if the appropriate care is given after each use.
- Ergonomic handle and shaft length make use comfortable and easy
- Sturdy spade can handle most yard conditions
- Intuitive design makes use by inexperienced gardeners and lawn care maintainers simple
- Blade must be cleaned after each use to ensure future maintenance
- Long shaft may not accommodate smaller users
The Radius Garden 22611 Root Slayer Edger has a uniquely shaped blade that will make you feel powerful and ready to take on any edges in your lawn. The inverted v-shape is designed to tear through roots and dirt easily. This edger is built for lawns with lots of roots or plant growth beneath the edge areas.
- Unique v-shaped head makes cutting through roots and vines a breeze
- Circular handle is ergonomically designed for comfort
- Strong blade cuts through the densest undergrowth and lawns
- Blade not strong enough to cut through roots more than 1 inch in diameter
- Heavyweight may be difficult for some users
- CREATE PERFECT SCULPTED EDGES: Create perfectly sculpted edges for your gardens, patios, and curbs. For the sharpest edges, make sure the soil is moist.
The Garden Weasel Edge Chopper offers a centered footstep, allowing pressure to be applied evenly across the full edge of the blade. The garden weasel is designed for easy maneuverability and can be moved along an edge with the foot in the holding position. This design makes for quicker edging and clean-cut lines.
- Centered footstep makes for comfort and ease of use in large areas
- Does not require side-to-side rotation to gain clean, straight cut
- Perfect for long straight edges
- May not be appropriate for circular or shaped edges
- Blade is not very wide
Manual Lawn Edger Summary and FAQ’s
In our opinion, the best manual edger is the AMES 2917200 Saw-Tooth Border Edger with T-Grip. With a 39-inch rounded blade and wide t-grip handle, this manual edger can tackle any edging job, large or small.
How do I edge my lawn with a manual edger?
Before you start, it is important to first map out the edge you plan to implement in your yard. If this is the first time you are edging, you may want to spray paint or use a rope to “draw” the line in your yard. This will be especially helpful when using your manual edger to ensure you create the appropriately shaped edge.
Once you have your edge outlined, take the following steps to edge your lawn:
- Firmly plant the edger straight into your lawn edge. Use your feet to dig the edger approximately 2 inches into the soil.
- Rock the edger from side to side to create the cut.
- Pull the edger straight out from the cut.
- Repeat along the entire edging line, overlapping each cut slightly to ensure a clean line.
Is it better to mow or edge first?
You should mow your lawn before you edge for a couple of reasons.
First, you will be better able to see the areas that need to be edged once your grass is cut and clean.
Second, if you edge first, you risk ruining the edge with your lawnmower when you pass over the edge. The lawnmower may cut up the line unevenly, causing you to have to edge twice.
How often should you edge your lawn?
After you mow your lawn, take time to assess the edge. Depending on the time of year and the growth of your lawn, you may need to edge small areas or create new edges every third or fourth mow.
In general, you should do a complete edging job at least once a year to ensure your lawn maintains a regular edge. If you do not maintain your edge between the yearly job, you may find the complete edging job to be more difficult.
Assessing after mowing your lawn and cleaning up small areas of the edge periodically will make the overall job easier each year.
How deep should I edge my lawn?
If you are edging along the edge of your lawn and a sidewalk or driveway, you should aim to cut about two inches deep into your lawn. Two inches will be enough to maintain a clean boundary line between the lawn and the sidewalk or driveway without creating an area prone to becoming muddy or puddling.
For flower beds and other landscaping, you will want to create an edge that is four to six inches deep. This will help prevent your grassroots from taking nutrients and resources from the flowers and plants in your beds. It will also allow enough area to be filled with mulch and soil to create a large boundary between the lawn and the beds.
Can you edge wet grass?
Edging when grass is wet is more difficult. Moisture softens both the grass and soil, making it difficult to edge a straight line. The softened ground is also harder to clear away after you cut the edge.
If you are just maintaining a small edge area, it is probably fine to edge that area when it is wet. It is not recommended that you edge your lawn for the first time or do an extensive edging job when your lawn is wet.
You should wait until the lawn has had at least two to three days to dry after a heavy rain to complete these jobs.
How to sharpen a manual lawn edger?
Before sharpening your manual lawn edger, be sure to check the manual for any warnings or details the manufacturer may provide about maintaining your edger blade.
It is important to maintain a sharp edge on the blade to make sure your edger cuts your lawn rather than rips or tears through it. Cuts ensure a clean line, while tears or rips can lead to rugged or jagged edges. In general, there are a few options to sharpen your manual lawn edger:
- Use a bench, angle, or another electric grinder
- Use a manual sharpening file
While you want your edge to remain sharp, it does not need to be as sharp as a knife or saw edge. Keep this in mind, especially if you are using an electric grinder, as it is easy to sharpen the boundary too much.
What is the best tool for edging a lawn?
A tool made specifically for edging will give you the results you are looking for. While you can use a shovel or other garden tool such as a hoe, you will not be able to achieve the clean cut you desire in your lawn easily.
In terms of edgers, the best tool depends on the area that needs to be edged. If you have a large lawn or multiple shaped areas that need to be edged, an electric or gas-powered edger may work best for the job. With proper planning, these edgers can power through large areas quickly, with minimal human muscle power required.
For smaller jobs or for cleaning up edges periodically, a manual edger works perfectly well. It may even prove to be the better tool as it requires less set up and can be more effective for detailed or small edges.
Are manual lawn edgers any good?
Manual lawn edgers are great tools for small lawns and edging maintenance. Because they do not require extension cords or gas power, they can be used at a moment’s notice. This makes them great tools for maintaining your edge periodically during the year. They are also great for edges that require detail, such as maneuvering around curves or garden walls.
With a little elbow grease, they can be used to create first time edges in any lawn. Given the manual power, larger lawns may require more than one day’s work to create a full edge. However, manual edgers are very effective tools that can handle any job.