News Update 2013


Mayfield Park/Community Project-The Mayfield Council

October 2013

We have been busy inside the walls at Mayfield this year. The good folks over in the Preserve moved the peafowl rehabilitation enclosure from behind the garage to outside the walls just to the south of the composting enclosure. On It’s My Park Day (coincidentally this year was also Texas Independence Day, March 2nd) volunteers from our neighbor and friend Frost Bank came out and spread hardwood mulch on the garden paths. The turnout for Trowel & Error on the first Saturday in April was exceptional this year with over 150 attendees. We cleared just under $6,000 with $850 being designated for the garden fund. Speaking of funds for the volunteer maintained gardens, over thirty of the individual plots are now adopted although we still have a couple of small plots that need the attention of that special someone. The Parks & Recreation Department (PARD) has been busy planting new grass in areas worn down by drought and foot traffic, installing new rock borders on some of the cottage beds and maintaining the ponds. In early summer after meeting with the Certificate of Appropriateness Committee of the Historic Landmark Commission, we applied for, and received, an Austin Parks Foundation grant to do remedial erosion control work in front of the gazebo wedding area on the south side of the park as well as the southeast corner of the cottage grounds where there is a gate into the Preserve.

The Mayfield Council wants to thank those who have given their money, but especially those who have given their time, to the preservation and maintenance of this true gem in the City’s parks system. The Mayfield Cottage and Grounds, a City of Austin historic landmark and a National Registered District, would not be what it is today without these volunteer efforts.

We have a new project we need your help on. Since the Mayfield Council commissioned and paid for the original Mayfield Park Master Plan in 1986, that document has guided the rehabilitation and restoration efforts at the park. During the last 27 years, in coordination with PARD, the Mayfield Council has secured over $400,000 of private monies and facilitated several thousand hours of volunteer time in implementing and maintaining the guidelines set out in the plan. While the structural bones of the cottage and grounds have remained fairly static, the landscape has continued to evolve over time and through changing environments. The trees have matured, and along with some badly placed volunteer palms, the areas of shade and sun have changed since the Gutches first planted the gardens. These changes have affected where and what is planted and thrives on the grounds, a good example being the lack of viable rosebushes in the historic Rose Beds. It is time for a new master plan, this time focused on the landscape.

The Mayfield Council has commissioned the noted Historic Preservation Landscape Architect Catherine O’Conner to work with the Council and PARD, and the scope of the project will focus on the historic landscape of Mayfield and its long-term preservation needs. Areas of research, analysis, and documentation will include historic and existing circulation, vegetation, hardscape elements and topography. The ultimate objective is to develop a plan that will assess and prioritize landscape preservation needs, interpretative goals, maintenance practices, and establish a platform toward the development of sustainable practices.

The project will cost just under $20,000 and we would appreciate your support in this effort. For tax purposes, contributions to the Mayfield Park/Community Project are channeled through an IRS § 501(c)(3) entity (Austin Community Foundation, MP/CP Fund) and can be sent to:

Mayfield Park/Community Project

MP Historic Landscape Fund

2704 Macken

Austin, Texas 78703


Austin Community Foundation

Mayfield Park/Community Project Fund

P.O. Box 5159

Austin, Texas 78763


Keep us in mind and come visit the park. We are expecting you.

The Mayfield Council:

Karen Cannatti Rick Chance Janice Brown

Blake Tollett Barbara Watt Sharon Lamb