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A Safe and Sound Backyard Playground: Turning Trees and Stumps into Swings, Slides and Jumps

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Mature trees take up a lot of space. Even the stumps they leave behind make the ground around them unusable. For parents of teenagers, or even for retirees, a shade-giving tree is probably preferable to a bare backyard.

However, if in a year or three you expect to have at least one young child on the loose at home, you should consider creating a backyard playground. A single mature tree can provide you with some useful—and fun—playground additions. If you happen to have a tree, or even a stump, taking up a portion of your yard, you could use it to create a backyard play area.

Woodchips for a Soft Landing

Even if you only have a tree stump, that tree stump could provide your backyard with the soft surface padding a backyard playground needs. With the help of a stump grinder, you can grind your tree stump into wood chips, which you can then use to cover the ground to create a soft base. This will protect your child and their friends should they fall or trip while playing.

Trampoline Steps

If you plan to add a trampoline to the backyard play area, you can create trampoline steps from your mature tree. Simply inform the tree service you use to cut down the tree that you wish to keep three to four portions of the trunk to use as trampoline steps. After removing protrusions and sharp edges, you can place those slices of tree trunk to form steps for the trampoline.

A Simple Seesaw

Seesaws are not difficult to make. Even someone who has a rudimentary knowledge of woodwork can create a simple but fun seesaw for their kids to play on. A single large branch from your mature tree should provide the basic materials for a backyard seesaw.

A Seating Area

Again, turning a mature tree into several stools and a table should be a simple matter. If you explain your plans to the tree removal service, they should have no problem cutting your tree into usable sections. However, remember to weatherproof and pest proof the sections of tree trunk you use to create playground features by applying a protective coating to the wood.

Sandbox Borders

Finally, you can even use several lengths of wood from your tree to create a border within which you can then place a sandpit. Again, placing a sandpit border doesn't require advanced woodworking skills. Just about anyone can do it.

As you can see, creating a safe backyard play area for your children is easy—especially if you have a spare tree or two. Even an old stump can at least provide your yard with the soft padding a children's playground needs. If you have little ones on the way, and would like to create a safe play area, consider using a tree service to help you turn your tree into a playground.