How to Build Playground Borders

Written by jennifer dermody
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How to Build Playground Borders
Define the area of your playground with a border. (playing ground image by Tormod Rossavik from

Playground borders define the play area in your back yard. Borders are aesthetically pleasing as well as practical and safe. They keep the protective play surface enclosed, give your backyard a complete look and encourage children to play in a specific area for play where they are safe. Playground borders can be made from rough logs, manufactured plastic border products or most commonly, landscape timbers.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Landscape timbers
  • Reinforcing bar, 24-inches per piece, 2 pieces per landscape timber
  • Sledge hammer
  • Drill and bit
  • Shredded rubber mulch, bark mulch, wood chips, sand or small gravel.

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  1. 1

    Build the perimeter of the play area out of landscape timbers. Place them in line one at a time creating a continuous border. Place the border no closer than 6-feet from any piece of play equipment.

    How to Build Playground Borders
    Landscape timbers create a strong border for playground equipment. (timber logs image by Horticulture from
  2. 2

    Drill a hole, the diameter of your reinforcing bar, 1-foot from each end of every landscape timber.

    How to Build Playground Borders
    Use an industrial bit for drilling landscape timbers. (drilling a hole studio isolated over white image by dinostock from
  3. 3

    Bang a length of the reinforcing bar through the hole with a sledge hammer until it is flush with the timber and deep into the ground. Repeat at both ends of each timber.

    How to Build Playground Borders
    A sledge hammer is used to bang reinforcing bar. (a hammer image by timur1970 from
  4. 4

    Fill your playground border with 9-inches minimum depth of shredded rubber mulch, bark mulch, wood chips, sand or small gravel which are all suitable materials for a protective play surface.

    How to Build Playground Borders
    Mulch is a suitable material inside a playground border. (Mulch image by Stefan Richter from

Tips and warnings

  • Place your playground far from trees, fences or sidewalks to avoid injuries.
  • If you choose to use logs follow the same steps but substitute logs for landscape timbers. For manufactured products like those at Frame It All, follow the product's specific instructions for installation.
  • Drill holes in your landscape timbers that will accommodate the diameter of the reinforcing bar you choose for the project so it does not split the wood when banging.

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