I don’t like to use the word hate so let’s just say I really, really, really, strongly dislike mulch. You’re probably wondering what’s so bad about mulch. It puts the finishing touch on our flower beds and gives our homes curb appeal. But now that they’ve started putting it on playgrounds, it really gets my goat.
Why? Because it ends up everywhere. My older daughter loves to play on the playground – the swing, the slide, just running around. That love results in mulch in her hair, clothes and shoes. And I am so tired of cleaning up mulch around my house and trying to get it out of her clothes, which is sometimes a moot effort.
I understand the need to have a soft surface under the playground equipment. I also get that mulch is cheaper than the rubberized padding they had on playgrounds when I was growing up on the East Coast. And if it wasn’t mulch, it would probably be sand or loose gravel, which wouldn’t be much better.
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, almost 60% of all playground injuries are caused by falls to the ground. Protective surfacing under and around all playground equipment can reduce the risk of serious head injury.
So I just suck it up, allow my kid to be a kid and vacuum and wash clothes more often. Eventually she’ll get older and playgrounds will be a thing of the past and I’ll wonder where the time went.
Serena Smith is a senior marketing communications specialist at ProMedica. She is responsible for facilitating media coverage of ProMedica and writes health articles for ProMedica HealthConnect. Her passion is health and wellness. She’s an avid runner and enjoys competing in half marathons. She loves to read, watch television and spend time with her husband and daughter.