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Maybe not the best plant choice for a playground


Dear Editor,

I read with interest the article in the Bay Post that supports Council's decision to have a sand pit at Corrigans Beach and then I read a counter article in The Beagle that informs me that sand hasn't been used for thirty years in public playgrounds because it is not resilient and is easily contaminated and requires a high degree of effort to keep it dry and free of risk from such things as fecal matter (human and animal), sharps and clear glass. Now I hear that the choice of ground cover planted adjacent to the playground is Grevillea 'Robyn Gordon' which is a hybrid between G.bipinnatifida and a red flowering form of G. banksii. All horticulturalists and especially those who work in open space management are well informed that the Grevillea 'Robyn Gordon' is the most common plant allergen reported of the grevilleas and the main native plant implicated in contact dermatitis in Australia. This is supported by an article by Dr. J. Menz who reported contact dermatitis from Grevillea 'Robyn Gordon' in the Medical Journal of Australia in 1985. I don't know if Council has a horticulturalist on its Parks payroll but a quick phone call to any garden centre or for that matter to any number of open-space or landscaping professionals would have suggested that Grevillea 'Robyn Gordon' was not the best choice to be planted in proximity to a tactile area used by children. Regards

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