City of Bastrop Recreation

Welcome to the City of Bastrop Parks & Recreation Department home page. The Department maintains over 65 acres of park land, and manages recreational events & community programs. Citizens and visitors can enjoy family outings at the various parks listed. Our two larger and most popular parks, Bob Bryant Park and Fisherman’s Park, sit along the Colorado River; these parks are equipped with fishing docks, nature trails, and boat/canoe ramps.


Plan your next trip to the park today!


    • If you decide to celebrate Earth Day (or any day!) with a tree planting, here are some helpful tips on picking, planting, and caring for your new tree seedling, sapling, or young tree.


                      When choosing a tree to plant in your yard, consider what trees you may already have there. Everyone has certain tree species that they enjoy over others, but excess planting of one species can leave your trees exposed to decay fungi and insect pests that may favor that species. Learn to like other varieties and promote diversity in your yard. Also, consider the mature crown sizes for your present trees and the new tree you are about to pick. Do not pick a tree that will become large enough to conflict with others and increase the costs of future care. When picking your future tree be sure to examine the tree’s exposed roots for damage. Avoid roots that are growing against the trunk of the tree as they can suffocate the trunk tissues as the tree grows. Look for damage in the bark of the tree and for co-dominant stems in the crown that can lead to structural issues in the future. The goal is to pick a tree that has a central stem so the tree can have the best chance to develop good structure while young and lessen the amount of care you must devote to correcting any structural defects. Look for broken or crossing limbs that may expose the tree to decay fungi and insect pests.


                      When planting your new tree, start with choosing the right planting site. Consider the mature crown size of the tree you are planting as well as the location of your home, driveway, and other outbuildings. This is not only to protect your home and other buildings, but to also protect the tree’s root system from damage or cuts in future construction. Be sure there are no underground utilities beneath your planting site and lastly, consider overhead utilities that the tree may interfere with in the future.


                      When planting, dig the hole just deep enough for the root ball of the tree and one and a half times the size of the root ball in width. Slope the hole inward toward the middle. Tease exposed roots away from the root ball to promote growth outward and not in a circular pattern as this could lead to anchorage issues in the future. When placing your tree in the hole, be sure to break apart and backfill with some of the site soil you dug up. Doing this will allow the roots to penetrate horizontally through the soil much easier. After backfilling, keep grass away from the base of the trunk so that your tree will have the best chance of growing at its quickest pace. There are many materials you can use to retain moisture and keep grass away from your tree, wood chip mulch being the most used. Wood chip mulch helps prevent compaction, erosion, limits evaporation, helps control weeds, increases organic matter and nutrients, and protects the tree trunk from string trimmer damage. When placing mulch around your tree, mulch thickness should be no more than 2 inches and as wide as your tree’s crown. Also, be sure the mulch is 4 to 10 inches away from the base of your tree trunk so that trunk flare can grow unimpeded. Limit moisture against the trunk so as not to promote decay fungi attacking your tree.


                      Once you have planted your tree, it may be necessary to stake it so that it does not get damaged or break in high winds. It is best to support your tree from two sides and not by placing a single stake right against the trunk. As your tree grows, it must be able to sway slightly with the wind so that the trunk and root system can spread giving the tree good anchorage and strength against storms or high wind as it matures. If you can pick a tree with a good crown structure, then you should not have to prune it until 1-2 years after planting. Disinfect your pruning tools before working on your tree to prevent any decay fungi or pathogens entering your tree from the pruning wounds. Sealing wounds is not always necessary but can be done if desired. Wound sealing for oaks is a must, however. After planting you should water the tree regularly, never run water directly against the trunk when watering. Pour water in and around the tree’s dripline. As the tree grows it will not be necessary to water so frequently. Trees take up to four years to establish themselves so watering them at that stage and in the summer months will aid them in surviving and growing to be enjoyed for years to come.


      Thomas Martinez

      Parks Crew Leader

      City Arborist: TX-4454-AUM

    • How to respond to freeze damage and deal with all those leaves on the ground

      Have you noticed trees around town looking a bit sad after the most recent winter storm, with browning or faded green leaves or trees that have dropped their leaves within a week or two?


      Don't worry too much just yet; most species of Oak trees will be just fine, and you should wait to prune those Crepe Myrtles. Most Windmill & Texas Sabal palms should also come through as long as their dominant bud within the fronds (leaves) didn't entirely freeze. If your palm does not survive, it will most likely fail on the northside. Foliage loss for Pine trees is serious and could leave the tree open to more insect pests. Do you have Cedar Elm or Sugarberry trees that had Mistletoe in them? The bad news is that this parasitic plant probably survived the freeze. It is recommended to wait to prune or remove trees until the end of June. This gives them a chance to possibly produce new foliage and to see if any other structural defects appear.


      Remember that a tree's response to an event like this depends on species and genetic variability. You should inspect your trees to the best of your ability for cracks along branch attachments and any other damage you may see. Doing this can help prevent hasty decisions about a removal unless there is apparent structural damage that could pose a risk to property or your neighbors. Visit the Texas Chapter of the International Society of Arboriculture and click on "Find a Texas Arborist" to have a Certified Arborist assess your trees.


      Many local arborists are willing to provide tips and guidance for citizens caring for our urban forest.


      Thomas Martinez

      Parks Crew Leader

      City Arborist: TX-4454-AUM

The Mission of the City of Bastrop is to continuously strive to provide innovative and proactive services that enhance our authentic way of life to achieve our vision.