Habiturf is Sprouting in Alderbrook Park

AustinParksFoundation Parks, Special Projects 5 Comments

As part of our ongoing water conservation efforts, Austin Parks Foundation is involved in a pilot project using the Habiturf grass seed mix at a brand new pocket park in Northwest Austin called Alderbrook Park.
Habiturf is a mix of native southwestern grasses that includes blue grama, curly-mesquite, and buffalograss. Together, these three unique grasses appear green and are soft to the touch. Most importantly, thanks to its high density and deep roots, Habiturf requires little to no water once it is established. Unlike grasses traditionally used in park spaces, one rain event every four to six weeks is enough to keep this grass happy.
The once vacant, treeless two-acre property at Lamplight and Parmer Lane is the perfect candidate for a Habiturf grass pilot project. Habiturf loves sunshine, so it grows best in areas without a lot of trees. While it is comfortable to walk, play and sit on, it prefers low to medium traffic areas; areas around pathways or on the outskirts of high use areas, like sports fields, are ideal. Habiturf also grows well with native Texas wildflowers like bluebonnets.
Currently, Habiturf is in the early stages of establishment in Alderbrook Park. Over the summer, the site was scraped, and the soil was tested and prepped with a special soil mix. Then irrigation lines were strategically laid on the ground surface to assist the grass during the early stages of its life. In mid-September the grass was finally planted along with several pounds of bluebonnet seeds that should come up in the Spring!
There is still a fence around the property because it is important to let the grass get settled in for a while before people walk on it. The City hopes to remove the fence this winter so that neighbors will be able to enjoy their new park space and experience the wonders of drought-friendly Habiturf!
For more information about Habiturf, visit http://www.wildflower.org/habiturf/ or take a trip to the Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Comments 5

  1. We just moved to this neighborhood, and bought a house with our life savings. What a HUGE disappointment to find out that this “park” was a pilot project!! There are hundreds of children in the surrounding houses and condos that lack a playground to play at. WHY ON EARTH SHOULD WE BE PENALIZED BY THIS UGLY PARK? In one month I have never seen anybody there, it is ugly and creepy. PLEASE CITY OF AUSTIN REMODEL THIS PARK, PUT A PLAYS CAPE AND A DOGS PARK. THANK YOU

  2. Frankly, I hope they leave it alone. If the kids need exercise get ’em a ball to kick. To me, it’s anything but creepy. I’ve been going there for 8 years and the creepy thing to me is that there are so many people around.

  3. Well where are they supposed to kick the ball? If they make noise in the backyard neighbors could complain! Whatever…. Even if the purpose of the park were more “adult-oriented” (outdoor excercice machines?, benches?) It would be better than what it is now. A bunch of ugly weeds do not constitute a park. I would much prefer that COA do their turf tests on other, bigger lots of land. This “park” is just ridiculous and an insult to the surrounding houses that don t have a real park within walking distance. I understand that some people might think otherwise.

  4. Hi Rudolph,
    All great ideas for this park! We’ve been partnering with the city’s Parks & Rec Department, as well as the neighborhood park adopter group to make Alderbrook a great new park for everyone. The site used to be an empty lot, and as part of our partnership with the Wildflower Center we’ve installed Habiturf to give it a good foundation of drought-resistant grass.
    In addition to the Habiturf pilot project the park adopters worked with us and PARD to plant trees, re-seed the bluebonnets, and install a butterfly garden. The group has also gone through a community input process and PARD has worked with them on a conceptual design for the park to include a walking trail, a playscape, a pavilion and a basketball half court. We were able to grant the adopter group funding for Phase 1 to install the walking trail, for which work will begin in 2016. The conceptual design is now going to the next phase, which means getting the final design completed and approved by PARD.
    If you’re interested in getting involved we’d be happy to introduce you to the park adopters group, and we hope you’ll be able to enjoy some of the new amenities coming to Alderbrook!

  5. Hi Rudolph,
    All great ideas for this park! We’ve been partnering with the city’s Parks & Rec Department, as well as the neighborhood park adopter group to make Alderbrook a great new park for everyone. The site used to be an empty lot, and as part of our partnership with the Wildflower Center we’ve installed Habiturf to give it a good foundation of drought-resistant grass.
    In addition to the Habiturf pilot project the park adopters worked with us and PARD to plant trees, re-seed the bluebonnets, and install a butterfly garden. The group has also gone through a community input process and PARD has worked with them on a conceptual design for the park to include a walking trail, a playscape, a pavilion and a basketball half court. We were able to grant the adopter group funding for Phase 1 to install the walking trail, for which work will begin in 2016. The conceptual design is now going to the next phase, which means getting the final design completed and approved by PARD.
    If you’re interested in getting involved we’d be happy to introduce you to the park adopters group, and we hope you’ll be able to enjoy some of the new amenities coming to Alderbrook!

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