Playgrounds, recreational spaces and gardens within learning environments are vital for the appearance and function of the institution, but most importantly are critical for the experience of the children, teachers and parents. Ochre Landscape aims to provide creative and inspirational external spaces combining the principles of both natural and structured play. Plant material plays a pivotal role in our play space designs. A play space with little or no natural shade is uninspiring, hot and provides limited stimulation. Reflective heat from large areas of artificial turf and rubber surfaces add very little to activities which engage children’s enquiring and imaginative minds. On the contrary, trees and shrubs provide natural play elements; sticks, flowers, seeds, nuts, bark to touch or peel, along with the cooling effect of natural shade.
Uneven surfaces and negotiating around tree trunks and winding paths are essential to the development of childrens’ gross motor skills which is the beginning of the pathway toward well developed fine motor skills. Walking along raised steppers, planks or uneven rock surfaces provides an environment to stimulate the connection between what the eyes see and how that information is translated into body movement.
Considered and Challenging
We aim to produce exceptional landscapes tailored to each client’s requirements, utilitarian needs, sense of place and budget. We often work closely with architects of new buildings to provide a cohesive landscape and building project. Ochre Landscape will always consider the existing site and architecture carefully and enjoy developing innovative designs that at times challenge the common perceptions of the garden and playground stereotype.
Ochre Landscape Designers have Bachelor level Horticultural Qualifications and treat the documentation of plant materials and soils with equal importance as the ‘hard’ landscape elements. Plant selection and general plant knowledge are key skills that the Ochre Landscape team brings to each new challenge. Our garden designers combine this horticultural knowledge with their talent in artistic design to create each playground and garden.