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Playground Installation

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by heygrassman, Dec 8, 2002.

  1. heygrassman

    heygrassman LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 509

    Hey all..

    I am being approached about about prepping the grounds for a new daycare center. By law, they are required to have a certain amount of grounds available per child. The owner is looking for a cross between mulched areas, turf areas and possibly an auxillary area (sand, concrete, etc.)

    Can anyone offer some thoughts on the best way to approach the mulched areas in and around the swings, etc. to best minimize maintenance? Landscape fabic works well in beds, but what about in areas that are very high traffic with little feet back and forth and up and down all day?? I am not inclined to approach with routine chemical treatments in the play area. Natural alternative are a potential thought.

    I appreciate any thoughts you can share..

  2. SCL

    SCL LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 543

    watch what you put down for mulch. Buy a certified playground mulch double ground, not that much more expensive, and put it down 6" thick. I think that's the specs per the mulch company for insurance reasons. That keep most of the weeds out also.
  3. AztlanLC

    AztlanLC LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,050

    Try this link, you might be able to get something familiar in your area.

  4. paul

    paul Lawnsite Addict
    Messages: 1,625

    First off all playground areas need 12" of mulch. There are some very strick rules on how far from the equipment it needs to go ( safety zone) Next be very carefull when installing it. Most playgrounds need some type of drainage system under the playground other wise the mulch can grow some nasty fungus :(
    If your not real sure of what you have to do Please!! contact a professional installer of playground equipment in your area, they have all the information and rules that you need to follow. Remember all you're good intentions won't help if a child get hurts and you get dragged in to court.
  5. SCL

    SCL LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 543

    You might try your local park district for help. Mine has a guy who is a Certified Playground Installer and Inspector. He's a wealth of information and never get charged a dime.
  6. jkelton

    jkelton LawnSite Member
    Messages: 243

    Check this website out:


    This is the handbook for playground safety published by the US Consumer Product Safety Commision. As Paul mentioned, be careful when installing. Twelve inches of mulch is a conservative value you can use, but you can use less if you read the laws (6" min - depending on height of playground equipment, 6' from the outermost edge of the equipment). Knowing the laws will put you in a definite advantage, both professionally and economically.
  7. DanaMac

    DanaMac LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,185

    I installed playgrounds for a while and, yes there are strict rules/laws concerning them. I agree with Paul, contact a playground installer or the manufacturer.

    We also cleaned the playgrounds in the McDonalds' restarants. Those are the dirtiest things I have ever seen. Dirt, grime, food, fungus, stench, dried ketchup, graffiti, and lets not forget the condoms. If I ever have kids, I WILL NOT let them play in those.

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