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20/05/2014 at 10:48
Slabs are uneven and dangerous. Looking for suggestions on low budget child proofing. How do I upload pictures from iPhone?
20/05/2014 at 12:06

Unfortunately we don't have the ability to load directly from phones at the moment but normally there is a picture of a tree above the box you type in (to the right of the smiley face) that lets you upload photographs.

As for the slabs would the cheapest cure not be to just lift and relay them in a sand / cement mix so that they are level and less of a trip hazard? Or are you wanting to get rid of the slabs all together in which case what about grass? You can get hard wearing grasses (important around children) and even fake grass if its only a small area you don't want to have to mow.

If you're fancying something a little different to just the normal lawn you can find some herbs (I think creeping thyme and chamomile are just two of the choices you can go for) that grow and cover the area very well without needing to be cut with a mower and stand up to foot traffic - even releasing their fragrances as you walk over them as an extra perk.

20/05/2014 at 12:14
Hi there. Thanks for the reply.

I do not appear to have any options of picture trees.

Relaying of slabs is perhaps the best option for financial reasons however a fake grass would be a better idea for child proofing.

Do you have any experience or knowledge of the rubber that can be found in children's playparks being an option in residential gardens?

If so are they expensive and difficult to install?
20/05/2014 at 16:02

You don't say how old the child/children is/are.

20/05/2014 at 16:17

Terrasofta chipped rubber for childrens play areas are very popular and available on eBay.  It is not cheap though, but have a look anyway.

20/05/2014 at 20:23
Hi sorry my little girl will be two next month.

I'll have a search for terrasofta. Thanks
20/05/2014 at 20:27
I was thinking more of the flat material used in play areas and swing parks. I'm not exactly sure what's it's called or how to even describe it.

It's possible that the material I'm referring to isn't even available for residential gardens but if it is I have no doubt it will cost a lot more than the terrasofta.. Hmm
20/05/2014 at 20:46

It would appear the material I've been referring to above is basically the same rubber mulch included in terrasofta but rather than being loose is resin bound.  I would assume that will be particularly expensive and presumably artifical grass would be a more cost effective option.

Picture of the relatively small garden below.  Shows the uneven slabs in the bottom and bombsite on the raised section.

http://s4.gardenersworld.com/uploads/images/original/46402.jpg?width=544&height=350&mode=max

 

20/05/2014 at 20:57

Amendment.  The material would actually be Wet Pour EPDM Rubber Surfacing.

30/05/2014 at 20:24

Hi there, from memory, the terra soft stuff will be expensive and also probably too permanent a solution, as I know from experience that your needs/wants will change quite rapidly. If you are planning to redesign anyway I would go for it and not worry too much about your 2 year old - mine were fine despite my worst fears of our various pitfalls and death traps. you could perhaps consider laying a permeable material down and covering with play bark - we did that for the climbing frame area. You can get that by the lorry load And if thick enough it will cushion any falls - and can be moved once they are over playing like that.  it won't be long before your little one will need a flat surface for a trike etc so maybe bark wouldn't work for the whole space!

02/06/2014 at 09:43

Possibly dig the slabs and the bomb site out, rebuild the step up between the two levels, cover the area with a well-compacted layer of crushed stone about 4 inches thick to keep the weeds down and then surface it with slate chippings. One of those big bags that has to be craned off a lorry would probably cover this - two certainly would.

Then you've got an area for a picnic table, a swing, some big pots of plants and no mud being trod into the house.

02/06/2014 at 11:05
How the hell do you rebuilt steps!! Haha
02/06/2014 at 11:32

Someone on here will tell you 

It won't seem 5 minutes before she's wanting a cool seating area behind a bamboo screen where she can hang out with her pals and play music that makes you feel old 

02/06/2014 at 11:33

When i seen the thread title "child proofing garden" it caught my eye as i thought it was about protecting your garden FROM children,  the children in my life do more damage than rabbits slugs and greenfly put together, i have even gone to the extent of strategically planting thorny shrubs in places to keep them out, bad grampa 

02/06/2014 at 11:48
Haha child is the priority at the moment although I'm sure that'll change in the not too distant future.

We have weeded, lais weed fabric and bark in the grassy L shape and square to the right and given it a general tidy at the weekend. Pictures to follow.

Next step is paint fence then consider lifting slabs at near bottom and relay them flat, then fix then two steps slabs to less dangerous stairs of some sort.

We have purchased 3x pack of foam anti fatigue squares mats from Costco that we can lay temporarily during the summer.
02/06/2014 at 12:30
02/06/2014 at 12:33

I have 2 kids under 4, more if you include all the kids they attract over! Keeping them safe inside the back garden is the most important point - so I have gates on both sides and high fences around. I know I can safely keep them in the back garden without worrying that they are around the front and know exactly where they are.

I also have a patio with slabs that need relayed as frosts and rains has caused them to lift and fall. It is a job to lift, reapply sand and mortar, but it is the cheapest and safest thing to do as I want to keep the slabs. It is a bore and heavy work but hopefully something I only need to do once a few years.

B&Q etc sell cheap rubber mats that you can use but unless you have a slide or swing then I do not think you really need them. A flat play area is more useful and gives them somewhere to play, so flattening the patio is the way to go. Ideally a lawn is good to run around on and fall on but I have had no issues with them playing on the uneven slabs - good for scooters and the like. In summer you can use cheap playmats for somewhere to play on and keep them off cool or damp slabs.

02/06/2014 at 12:50

Hi roscoe, my 2 are 3 and 6 months, when we moved. Here our back garden was all paved except for a large triangular bed that was sloping, I was pregnant so couldn't do the hard work but got all paving lifted, re used bricks for path, patio and small area by back door and laid lawn, onky yesterday we eerie watching 3 year old run round and round lawn laughing and commented we did best thing, it cost around £600,similar size plot to you, we got a local gardener, but if you and any willing volunteers could do it ,or a local odd job/handyman could be a lot less, I know it's a bit high maintenance to reseed like we had to after wet winter and no sun, and mow, but doesn't t take lying and kids love grass!

02/06/2014 at 13:11

Please excuse typos and strange words, iPAD has mind of own 

02/06/2014 at 16:02

http://s4.gardenersworld.com/uploads/images/original/47877.jpg?width=272&height=350&mode=max

 Picture shows the small progress made. 

Thanks for the reply guys.  As mentioned above we do have a temporary fix in terms of rubber mats that will held in the short term.

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