How to Repurpose Old Pallets into Rustic Garden Path Edging

How to Repurpose Old Pallets into Rustic Garden Path Edging

How to Repurpose Old Pallets into Rustic Garden Path Edging


Old and used wooden pallets can be repurposed into a variety of DIY home decor and furniture projects. One great way to reuse pallets is to make rustic edging for your garden paths and beds. With a few basic tools and supplies, you can give new life to discarded pallets and add a charming, natural touch to your outdoor space.

What You’ll Need

To make garden edging from pallets, you’ll need:

  • Old wooden pallets – Try to find hardwood pallets that are still in good condition. Softwood tends to deteriorate more quickly.

  • Circular saw or jigsaw – For cutting the pallets into planks. A miter saw also works well.

  • Drill – For drilling holes and screws.

  • Screws – Exterior screws, 2-3 inches long. Make sure they are compatible with the pallet wood.

  • Sandpaper – For smoothing rough edges.

  • Safety gear – Gloves, eye protection, etc. Important when working with pallets, which often have protruding nails and splinters.

  • Outdoor wood sealant – To protect the finished edging from weathering.

Prepping and Cutting the Pallets

Before cutting your pallets, you’ll want to prep them:

  • Disassemble the pallets by prying off slats. Use a pry bar or hammer to separate the boards without splitting them.

  • Remove all nails and screws. Use a pry bar, hammer, or pliers.

  • Sand planks to smooth. Start with 60 grit sandpaper for rough edges, then use 120 and 220 grit for Smoother finishing.

Cutting the Planks

  • Measure the length of your garden bed or path area where you want edging. Leave room for corners and ends.

  • Cut pallet wood planks to your desired edging height, ranging from 3-5 inches tall generally.

  • Use a circular saw or jigsaw to make cuts. Clamp planks securely to a work surface before cutting.

  • Cut corner edge pieces at 45 degree angles to properly fit corners.

Assembly and Installation

Once your edging planks are cut to size, it’s time for installation:

  • Drill pilot holes in planks every 16-24 inches. Counterbore holes to hide screw heads.

  • Position edging pieces along garden bed/path perimeter and screw together at joints. Use scrap pallet wood to shim any uneven gaps.

  • Drill holes in ground with an auger or post hole digger. Space holes approx. 2 ft apart, larger in corners.

  • Insert treated wood stakes or rebar into the holes. Leave 6-12 in. sticking above ground.

  • Attach pallet edging to stakes, screwing through pre-drilled holes into stakes.

  • Use exterior wood glue for extra stability at joints. Allow glue to dry completely before backfilling soil.

  • Backfill soil up to cover bottom 2-3 inches of edging. Pack soil firmly.

Finishing Touches

To complete your recycled pallet garden edging:

  • Consider staining, painting, or sealing the wood to protect from weathering. Avoid pressure-treated lumber stain.

  • For rustic appeal, you can lightly sand to distress the wood after sealing.

  • Add corner trim pieces or decorative tops for a more finished look.

  • Plant flowers, ground cover, or mulch along the edging to complement your garden beds and paths.

With a bit of time and elbow grease, you can create beautiful raised garden beds or meandering pathways edged with rustic, budget-friendly pallet wood. Maintain your edging by re-sealing the wood every 1-2 years.