pies cropOur Park Improvement Education Series, or PIES, is a series of eight free workshops covering four park project topics, with each topic repeated. PIES workshops are open to the public and cover topics like tree care, water conservation and invasive plant species in Austin.

Current Adopt-A-Park leaders as well as future park adopters are encouraged to register for the full series to better understand how to care for their parks. 

Our Classes

Below are some brief descriptions of our PIES workshop topics. Have an idea for new topics, or topics you’d like to see covered more in-depth? Email us at volunteer@austinparks.org and let us know what workshops you’d like to see added to the schedule!

Tree experts from the City of Austin’s Urban Forestry Department join us to describe the purposes and procedures as well as demonstrate root collar clearing and mulching. The demonstration will be followed by hands-on learning with our experts on hand to help out and answer questions.
In Central Texas water is one of our most precious and limited resources. Experts from the City of Austin’s Watershed Protection Department join us to offer strategies and guidelines for creating and implementing water conservation features such as terraces, berms and swales. The workshop also provides information regarding strategic native planting in Austin’s Grow Zones.

Urban creeks are under significant pressure from development and current stormwater management practices. How vegetation is managed in these areas can offset negative impacts to some degree and provide water quality, streambank stability, and flood control benefits. City of Austin Watershed Protection Department staff will address how we can develop restoration plans for riparian areas. These plans can then be used to guide future Adopt-A-Park leaders and volunteer efforts in city parks. The class includes a brief creek walk, evaluation of the area for potential restoration, and plan development based on a restoration template developed by WPD staff.

Learn more about riparian restoration here.

This workshop includes methods and techniques for safely planning and installing a park trail and is a three-part series including the two-day Trail Basics workshop, and the follow-up Trail Leadership workshop. Proper trail design and construction promote sustainable trails that maximize hiking aesthetics and minimize repair and erosion. Professional trail designers from S&S Trails Inc. will join us for a classroom session, a hands-on workday, and a follow-up session in the weeks following.
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