Children’s Play Areas

Artificial Grass Playgrounds & Children’s Play Areas

Artificial grass has revolutionized the landscape of playgrounds and children’s play areas, offering a safe, durable, and aesthetically pleasing surface for kids to enjoy. As concerns about safety, turf maintenance, and environmental impact grow, synthetic grass emerges as a popular solution, catering to the needs of parents, educators, and community planners alike. This introduction aims to provide unbiased information about artificial grass play areas, highlighting their benefits, popularity, and safety considerations.

Growing Popularity of Artificial Grass Playgrounds

Artificial grass playgrounds are increasingly becoming the preferred choice for schools, daycares, parks, and municipalities. With its numerous advantages, synthetic turf offers a versatile solution that meets the demands of modern play environments. The rise in popularity of artificial grass play areas reflects a shift towards safer, more sustainable options that prioritize the well-being of children.

Artificial grass playgrounds and children’s play areas offer a safe, durable, and aesthetically pleasing alternative to traditional ground covers. With their growing popularity and numerous advantages, synthetic turf surfaces continue to shape the landscape of outdoor play, providing children with enriching experiences and lasting memories.

Playground on artificial grass

Safety Considerations of Artificial Grass Playgrounds

Turf Girl - Backyard Play Area

Impact Absorption:

Synthetic turf's ability to cushion falls and reduce impact-related injuries is a key safety feature for playgrounds and children’s play areas. With proper installation, infill material, and impact absorbing foam padding, artificial grass provides a supportive surface that minimizes the risk of accidents during play.

LA Turf Co Playground Turf

Non-Toxic Materials:

Concerns about the safety of synthetic turf materials have led to advancements in manufacturing processes, resulting in non-toxic, lead-free products that meet stringent safety standards. Artificial grass playgrounds prioritize the health and well-being of children, ensuring a safe and enjoyable play experience.

FusionTurf - Playground Turf

Industry Standards:

Artificial grass play areas adhere to strict industry standards and regulations, ensuring compliance with safety guidelines and protocols. From installation practices to maintenance procedures, turf manufacturers prioritize the safety of their customers, delivering reliable solutions for playground environments.

Playground Turf System Components

The graphic below (from SYNLawn) shows the individual components and highlights the important features of artificial grass for playgrounds and children’s play areas. Hover or tap on the “+” symbols to display the text that identifies the individual components. The system represented below is just ONE option for installing synthetic turf on kid’s play areas. Each installation is unique and may require a different setup to suit the needs of the installation.

Playground Turf System

Playground Turf
• Fibers: Polypropylene Monofilament
• Pile Height: 1" to 2"
Face Weight: 75 oz - 80+ oz / sq. yd.
Total Weight: 95 oz - 105+ oz / sq. yd.

Concrete Border

• Hole-Punched

Padding Options
• Foam Padding
• High-Density Foam Padding
• Rubber Padding
• Brock Pads

Bender Board
• a.k.a. 'Nailer Board'
• Secures turf edges

• Decomposed Granite
• Class II Road Base
• Crushed Miscellaneous Base (CMB)

Native Soil

Playground Turf Features

Features to Look for in Artificial Grass for Playgrounds & Play Areas:

Playground Turf Features

Fall Protection:

Fall protection is paramount for artificial grass play areas, making shock-absorbing padding the best choice, as it is specifically designed to minimize the risk of injuries from falls. Shock pads are ideal for these applications. They provide a significant level of impact absorption, meeting or exceeding critical fall height safety standards set by organizations like ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials). The thickness and density of the shock pads can be selected based on the height of playground equipment and the level of safety required. The goal is to cushion falls and provide a safer surface for children to play on.

Turf Fall Protection Options
Playground Turf Durability


Durability is essential for artificial grass play areas to withstand the rigors of children’s play and outdoor conditions. High-quality turf products feature robust materials and construction that resist wear, tear, and fading due to heavy foot traffic, UV exposure, and weather elements. This ensures that the play area remains attractive and functional for years to come, even with frequent use and exposure to the elements.

UV Protection:

UV protection is crucial for artificial grass play areas to maintain their color, integrity, and performance in sunny outdoor environments. Premium turf products are infused with UV stabilizers during the manufacturing process, which shield the fibers from the harmful effects of prolonged exposure to sunlight. This prevents fading, discoloration, and degradation of the turf, ensuring that the play area retains its vibrant appearance and structural integrity over time, even in the harshest sunlight conditions.

UV-Resistant Turf vs. Unprotected Turf
Playground Turf Safety


Synthetic golf green turf products manufactured in the USA will be free from contaminants like lead or other heavy metals. Synthetic grass also eliminates the need for chemicals like fertilizers and pesticides, which pose a health risk to children and pets. Reducing exposure to these elements creates a safer and cleaner environment for you and your family. Make sure any turf products you consider for your playground or children’s play are was manufactured in the U.S.A., is lead-free, PFAS-free, and non-toxic.

Antimicrobial Protection:

Antimicrobial protection is essential for artificial grass play areas to maintain a clean and hygienic environment for children. High-quality turf products feature built-in antimicrobial agents that inhibit the growth of bacteria, mold, and mildew, reducing the risk of infections and odors. This ensures that the play area remains safe and sanitary for children to play and explore, promoting their health and well-being. 

Turf With vs. Without Antimicrobial Protection

Infill Options

What's the Best Infill for Playgrounds & Play Areas?

Infill is applied to artificial turf to keep the turf fibers upright, facilitating drainage, acting as ballast to anchor the turf in place and provide cushioning during falls. The best infill material for artificial grass playgrounds and children’s play areas will vary from project to project based on location and budget. Click the name of an infill below to learn about its efficacy on artificial turf playgrounds and play areas.

Envirofill infill is a high-quality, durable infill material designed specifically for artificial grass installations. It is composed of rounded quartz core coated with a green acrylic resin. What sets Envirofill apart is its antimicrobial protection technology, Microban®. This technology is incorporated into the coating, providing continuous antimicrobial protection that helps prevent the growth of bacteria, mold, and mildew. This feature is particularly beneficial in pet areas, playgrounds, and sports fields where hygiene is a significant concern.

T°Cool Infill is an advanced infill solution for artificial turf that incorporates both evaporative cooling technology and antimicrobial protection. This specialized infill is designed to address the heat issue commonly associated with artificial turf, especially in warm climates. Evaporative cooling technology is incorporated into T°Cool Infill and works by retaining moisture, which, when heated by the sun, evaporates and significantly reduces the surface temperature of the turf.

The evaporative cooling process can lower turf temperatures by up to 50° F, providing a cooler, more comfortable surface. The cooling effect is activated by watering, either naturally through rain or manually with a hose or sprinkler system. In addition to its cooling properties, T°Cool Infill also offers antimicrobial protection. This feature helps in preventing the growth of bacteria and microbes, ensuring a hygienic surface that is particularly beneficial in pet-friendly areas and where children will be playing.

SafeShell® and SafeShell SmoothPlay™ are both part of the Motz Group’s organic infill lineup, made from 100% USA-grown walnut shells. These infills provide all the benefits of a natural infill while maintaining safety, integrity, and quality. They are low-maintenance, long-lasting, and safe for people, pets, and the environment, making them a significant improvement for turf systems.

Safeshell SmoothPlay is Motz’s latest innovation in infills, designed to be cooler, with less friction and high durability. Its fine granular size allows it to settle easily into dense turf systems, resulting in a less abrasive surface. Abrasion in SmoothPlay is reduced by up to 42% compared to traditional crumb rubber and sand systems. The toughness, durability, and natural cooling properties of Safeshell make it suitable for sports fields, while its allergen- and toxin-free nature makes it an ideal choice for playgrounds.

Turf System Mockup-SafeShell Infill

Sub-Base Preparation

What Type of Sub-Base is Best for Playgrounds & Play Areas?

Sub-Base Material:

A granular sub-base material composed of compacted aggregate material, such as decomposed granite (DG) or Class II Road base, offers the best foundation for playgrounds and children’s play areas.

This mixture provides excellent drainage properties, allowing water to quickly drain away from the surface and preventing pooling or flooding. Additionally, the compacted sub-base offers stability and support for the artificial turf, ensuring a level and safe playing surface. It also helps to prevent the growth of weeds and provides a solid foundation for the turf, enhancing its durability and longevity in high-traffic areas where children play and explore.

Base Material

Benefits of Artificial Grass Playgrounds & Play Areas

Soft & Durable

Playground turf offers a resilient surface designed for daily use, ensuring safety without constant maintenance. Its durability withstands wear and tear, providing a reliable play area for children to enjoy.

Clean & Mud-Free

Artificial grass eliminates mud and stains, providing a clean, safe play area free from dirt and debris throughout the year. It offers a hassle-free solution for maintaining a pristine outdoor space.

Safe for Kids & Pets

Pesticide-free artificial turf ensures a safe play surface for children, while added foam padding cushions falls for enhanced safety. With its low-maintenance design, it promotes worry-free playtime.


Hypoallergenic artificial grass reduces pollen exposure, creating a safe outdoor play environment. Its antimicrobial properties further enhance safety by preventing bacterial growth, ensuring a healthy play area for children with allergies.


Artificial grass reduces the need for harmful chemicals and minimizes carbon emissions from maintenance equipment. By saving time, effort, and resources, it offers an environmentally friendly alternative to traditional lawn care practices.


Artificial turf requires minimal upkeep, eliminating the need for mowing, watering, and re-seeding. With occasional debris removal, rinsing, and brushing, it provides a convenient and time-saving solution for maintaining a beautiful outdoor space.


Absolutely! Backyard Putting Greens offer an exceptional opportunity to enhance your short game skills. Crafted from durable artificial turf, these greens provide a consistent surface that outlasts natural grass, eliminating the need for frequent replacements. The reliable surface ensures a more predictable ball lie, allowing you to focus on refining your technique. Particularly beneficial for honing speed control, practicing on your home green enables you to master the intricacies of putting. By investing in a Backyard Putting Green, you’re making a valuable commitment to elevating your golf game and achieving greater success on the course.

When it comes to choosing between artificial turf and natural grass for your backyard putting green, there are several factors to consider. Artificial turf offers numerous advantages over natural grass, making it the preferred choice for many homeowners.

  • Durability: Artificial turf is exceptionally durable and long-lasting compared to natural grass. Its resilient nature ensures that it maintains its quality and appearance over time, reducing the need for frequent maintenance or replacement.
  • Consistency: Artificial turf provides a consistent surface in terms of both appearance and performance. Unlike natural grass, which can vary in texture and condition, artificial turf ensures that every putt behaves predictably, allowing for more accurate practice sessions.
  • Forgiveness: The forgiving nature of artificial turf makes it easier to achieve successful putts. Its even surface and uniform texture minimize variations in ball roll, helping players focus on improving their technique without being hindered by inconsistencies in the turf.
  • Affordability: Artificial turf is generally more affordable than natural grass in the long run. While the initial investment may be higher, the reduced maintenance requirements and longer lifespan of artificial turf result in significant cost savings over time, making it a practical choice for budget-conscious homeowners.

Artificial turf golf greens are meticulously designed to emulate the look, feel, and performance of real grass. From appearance to ball reception and putting, synthetic turf provides an authentic golfing experience, ensuring every shot is met with consistent and reliable performance.

Most artificial turf putting greens feature Nylon or Polypropylene fibers engineered to withstand the elements, including rain, snow, ice, and sun exposure. With proper maintenance, typically once or twice a year, your artificial turf putting green can endure well over 15 years, ensuring years of enjoyment and performance.

Most artificial turf putting greens feature Nylon or Polypropylene fibers engineered to withstand the elements, including rain, snow, ice, and sun exposure. With proper maintenance, typically once or twice a year, your artificial turf putting green can endure well over 15 years, ensuring years of enjoyment and performance.

There isn’t a minimum requirement for putting green size, however, a good starting point is a minimum area of 150 sq. ft. to ensure sufficient space for challenging putts. However, the versatility of artificial grass means that it can be installed in just about any location, including around trees, corners, pools, and other objects, allowing for customized designs to fit your unique space and preferences.

Installation time varies based on project size and complexity. While small, simple greens can be completed in a day, larger or more intricate designs may take a week or more. Typically, most backyard putting greens are installed within 2 – 3 days, ensuring minimal disruption and quick enjoyment of your new green.

Yes, artificial turf can be used to create outdoor as well as indoor golf greens for residential and commercial properties, providing versatile solutions to suit any environment and golfing preference.

Artificial grass putting greens require minimal maintenance, with regular debris removal to keep the surface clean. With little upkeep required, you can enjoy consistent performance and aesthetics year-round, making artificial turf an ideal choice for hassle-free golfing enjoyment. Depending on the wind and foot traffic, your golf green may need to have the infill material replenished annually.

This is one of the most frequently asked questions about artificial turf putting greens, and one of the most difficult to answer.  As a general rule, an artificial grass putting green costs between $15 and $30+ per square foot which includes design, materials, and installation. The costs can vary significantly based on the size of the green, turf product being used, putting green features, and other site-specific factors. To get a better idea of the cost, we’ve built a putting green cost calculator that enables you to factor in the costs of additional features and enhancements.

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  4. Download your optimized image.
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Cover and Gallery images should be no smaller than 1920 x 1080 px for the best clarity, and the subject matter should be as centered as possible to avoid being cut off at the edges.

Image Size Limits

Images can have a maximum file size of 1 MB. Should you need to compress your images, no problem! Here’s a free tool with super simple instructions.

  1. Open Squoosh.
  2. Upload an image.
  3. Choose WebP from the dropdown.
  4. Download your optimized image.