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CITY PARKS HOURS:
OPEN EVERY DAY 6AM-10PM
Welcome to the City of Bastrop Parks home page. The Division 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!
We at the City of Bastrop hope that everyone had a great holiday season. Now that we are in a new year, we would like to make sure our citizens are starting their year with healthy trees. Here are some tips for maintaining and caring for your trees to help keep the city beautiful for all.
Whether your trees are young or fully mature in size, correct pruning practices are always good to know to assure good structure and healthy growth of your trees. Always be sure to disinfect your cutting tools with a general disinfectant or bleach diluted in water before pruning. It is best to disinfect in-between pruning of each different tree, as well.
When pruning, it is recommended that the final cut be made just out the branch bark ridge and branch collar as seen here. The ability to see these formations within each branch union is dependent upon the species of tree you have in front of you.
Here are some examples of incorrect pruning cuts:
On the left we see a limb that was not removed completely back to the branch union. On the right we see two limbs that were not cut back to the branch unions and could be classified as improper heading cuts. Cuts shown are not recommended because they don’t allow the tree to properly heal over the pruning wound and cuts like this could also leave a tree vulnerable to disease, decay, and insect pests.
Another aspect of pruning to remember is the weight of the limb/s that you are pruning from your tree/s. If you do not remove the weight of the limb before making your final pruning cut, you could end up peeling the bark off the tree from the limb, branch union, and trunk.
The Three-Cut Method for pruning is the most commonly seen and taught way of removing slightly large to medium sized limbs from a tree.
Undercut the branch a few inches away from the trunk to prevent bark tearing. Only cut part way through the bottom of the branch.
Move a short distance away from the first cut, further out on the branch and cut al the way through to remove the entire branch. This will eliminate the weight of the branch, allowing you to make the final pruning cut. If the falling branch tears the bark off the trees as it drops, the bark tear will stop at the first cut.
Start the third pruning cut on the outside edge of the branch-bark ridge and cut through the branch to the outside edge of the collar swelling on the underside of the branch. Remove only the branch; do not damage the trunk or branch collar.
When removing tree branches, don’t ever cut the branch flush with the trunk or parent limb, be sure to always leave a short stub, to preserve the branch collar so the tree can heal over the wound more easily.
Here are some examples of correct pruning cuts and how they can look when completely healed:
When correct pruning cuts are made the tree is given the best chance to heal correctly and quickly to avoid disease and decay from entering at the pruning wound and possibly spreading inward through the tree. Take some time to inspect the trees in your yard and see if you can spot the branch unions and how they may look different from tree to tree.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Parks Crew Leader
City Arborist: TX-4454-AUM
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.
“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.”
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