Installation of a Concrete Weed and Grass Barrier
The installation of new railings running along an existing brick wall on this site we maintain in south east London would make the cutting of grass and control of weeds under and behind the railings very difficult, therefore a solution was required to stop any growth in this area to enable the lawn and lawn edges to look as good as possible.
Possible ideas were using loose material, such as forest bark or pea shingle laid onto a weed suppressing membrane, but this was decided not to be the best course of action as it would not be ideal because when the edge of the grass was strimmed the loose material would flick out. Also the idea of using larger stones laid loose was turned down because the feeling was that people could pick up and throw the stones too easily from the road side of the railings. Therefore a more permanent solution was decided upon.
The Method of Installation
We dug out a 20cm width trench under the length of the railing and removed the excess soil from site. We then filled the trench with concrete which was smoothed and made good. Large stones were then pushed into the surface to enhance the appearance, this makes the area of much more interest and a feature rather than to just have plain concrete.
New grass is to be laid in the spring up to this new barrier which will provide a very neat edge. Because the barrier is permanent and not permeable no weeds will be able to grow through or take hold. Once the new grass is established and regular grass cuts are again taken place the edge of the grass can easily be maintained but more importantly will look much neater and sharper than if the concrete barrier was not installed.
This will improve the look of the grass by enabling a neat edge to the lawn and avoid any scruffy unwanted growth behind the railing while also neatly finishing off where the railing meets the ground. As these new railings were installed at great expense to the running of the development it was certainly worthwhile finishing the job off like this to ensure the overall look is neat and sharp. It will also last a great many years and will certainly help with the cutting of the grass for a long time.