I'm having to reset the pavers along the side yard of our house after putting in a french drain and sump pump. The issue I have is that after I dig out all of the dirt to allow for the 4" of gravel, 1" of sand and 2" pavers, the dirt is below the fence and open to my neighbor's yard. I bought some pressure treated 2x6 to nail to the bottom of the current fence, but the old concrete from the previous fence is going to cause problems with the 2x6 fitting evenly.

In the attached photo, the string you see is level from the backyard concrete to the front gate. This is only about 3/4" above the bottom of the fence. In this photo, I haven't even dug down the 7" necessary, so the gap under the fence will be larger than what you see.

What do you suggest I use for a border, to contain the gravel, sand and pavers, so they don't gradually slide under the fence in to my neighbors yard?

Thanks in advance!

Photo: Bottom of fence


The few that I use are: 1/4 inch Bender Board. This is a 10 foot length of Redwood that is 4 inches wide. It is mostly used for the slight radius it can be shaped to. Paver retailers should have a plastic boarder that will easily conform to any shape. If needed and possible use the pavers you presently are installing by turning them on edge. Or halving them and installing them as a border.

  • This gap between the bottom of the fence and top of the soil (once dug deep enough) will be greater than 4", so I'm not sure the bender board will work. I've seen the plastic borders, but those are just to contain the pavers themselves, not the base rock/sand. With that said, I like the idea of using pavers turned on their side, that sounds like a good option. Thanks for the tips ojait! – RON8O Oct 9 '15 at 17:18

I would dig a narrow, flat-bottomed trench just wide enough to install a 1 x 12 (i.e. 3/4" x 11 1/4") or 2 x 12 board. The board should either be pressure treated, or made from a naturally rot-resistant wood like redwood or cedar. The board should be supported underneath by the trench. The board should be anchored horizontally by the trench and the fence.

When digging the trench, I would make it just wide enough at the bottom to install the board. I would use the board to find the high spots of the trench, and dig out the high spots until the trench is level along the bottom. At the fence posts, the concrete fence post bases will prevent you from digging the trench. Do not dig the trench where it would undermine the fence post bases; cut the board short instead. The fence post bases themselves can hold in your paver base.

After installing the board, I would fill both sides of the trench back in (up to your intended surface for the next step of your project). I would not nail the dam to the fence. I would make a modest effort to compact the backfill.

Eventually, the fence will need to be replaced. At that time, you will not want nails attaching your board to the fence.

  • this makes perfect sense, not nailing the new bottom board to the existing fence and digging a deeper/narrow trench would help hold this board in place. Do you think there is any advantage or disadvantage of using pavers turned on their side in the same way as you describe using the 1x12? – RON8O Oct 9 '15 at 17:23
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    @RON8O, you could do it with the brick only, the 8 tall brick will stil anchor in the ground and rest on the fence at the top. You will spend an eternity getting them set right so they line up and act right. Setting a 1X4 in the ground, in line with the fence bottom so you have a hard line to set them by , then you only need to sweat the height out of the ground. After all that is done, a 1X8, or 1X12 as suggested will do it all much simply. After that, for what you will see, you can cut brick to mimic a soldier course, which is the term used for the type of brick orientation in mind. – Jack Oct 10 '15 at 1:26
  • Thanks for the feedback Jack and everyone else. The help provided here will come in handy this weekend. – RON8O Oct 10 '15 at 2:16

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