Category Archives: Plants for Kidsafe Playgrounds

Live Plants and Turf To Be Used In Playground Fall Zones Again

Live plants and turf were not allowed to be used in fall zones in playgrounds until recently. Through new testing, certain live plants and turf  have shown that they meet fall zone requirements of the Australian Standard AS/NZ4422:1996.

Avoid compacted ground like this in playgrounds by using Living Soft Fall™

Plants that were grown in soft fall mulch had a min: Critical Fall Height of 3.4 meters and turf that was grown in Living Soft Fall had a critical fall height of 4 metres, which is far superior to industry standards, and requirements of the manufacturers of playground equipment.

Our children’s safety in playgrounds is of the utmost importance and has lead to high regulation of surrounding surfaces adjacent to playground equipment.

Up to this point in time, the only ones who have bothered to undertake the expensive testing to confirm whether those surfaces meet fall zone requirements has been non-green life technologies.

Let’s look at swings for example, for swings this has often meant that a surface must be safe for children to fall 2.2m.

Critical Fall Height reports (the results from recent research) prove that certain green life is safe and complies with the Australian Standard, which now allows green life to be used in playground surfacing.

The use of plants in playground surfacing has won a KidSafe award for Innovative Design Elements. Before this research the only products that met the standards were mulch, artificial turf, and an array of rubber type products.

Landscape Architects and Designers have really embraced the 202020 vision, which is: To Increase Green Space by 20% by 2020. Now that live plants and turf are allowed to be used in in play grounds again they have another tool to increase the percentage of green life in the landscape.

The obvious advantages of increased green life is the cooling of our cities, increased oxygen production, and the increase in health and wellbeing of people.

Green infrastructure enhances the healthiness, liveability and sustainability of urban environments.

There have been many studies around the world that confirm the benefits to humans of being in touch with nature, so  why have our children in playgrounds been ignored until now? …read more

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The Kidsafe Playground Renovation Completed

The Kidsafe Playground Renovation Completed

Shara™ Lomandra

Ozbreed donated plants to the Kidsafe Playground in Westmead Sydney to use throughout their playground. Katrina Layt from the Ozbreed office had also put in her time to help out at their working bee.

The plant varieties donated to the Kidsafe Playground by Ozbreed are great plants that are naturally safe for children, soft to touch, and can handle rough kids! Here’s a list of the varieties that were used in this playspace.

Grey Box™ Westringia fruticosa ‘WES04’ PBR
Shara™ Lomandra fluviatilis ‘ABU7’ PBR
Tanika® Lomandra longifolia ‘LM300’ PBR.

Out of these plants, a few Shara were planted next to a balance beam in playground mulch to demonstrate the success of the Playground Mulch Trial. Over the last 3 years Ozbreed has been taking part along with Fiona Robbe’ Landscape Architects, The Bark Blower and Acoustoscan in the Playground Mulch Trial. Results have shown that strappy plants can be used in playground mulch with good plant health, as well as safety.

On the 7th August 2013 …read more