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The Texas Bluebonnet

The Texas Bluebonnet (Lupinus texensis) has been the state flower of Texas since 1901 and holds a special place in any Texan's heart. They are hardy and rugged, yet beautiful flowers that blanket roadsides, pastures, and meadows across the state every spring. 

The Hill Country and Blackland Prairie Ecoregions is the native range of Texas bluebonnets, but many Texans have planted bluebonnets far beyond that range.

During the early spring, Texans everywhere can expect to see a flourish of flowers such as trout lilies, buttercups, many mustards, Dakota vervain, four-nerve daisy, spring beauty, violets, Texas rainbow cactus, fishhook barrel cactus, Texas mountain laurel flowers, among many others.

Scientists think that this spring will be a promising wildflower season since the previous years have been extremely dry winters.

Due to all the wet weather this winter, this wildflower season is expected to be very colorful.

Any Texan who wants to set out to view wildflowers this spring can log the flora they see on 'iNaturalist' and contribute to biologists' knowledge of the state's wildflowers. Enjoy

TEXAS TOP 20 Wildflowers

Texas is home to thousands of species of wildflowers. Here are the top 20 most common wildflowers you’ll see in Texas during spring and summer.

 

Now before we get started, let’s go over a few of the Rules of the Road to keep in mind when taking photos in the bluebonnets…

Use common sense.

Only pull over on the shoulder of the road if you feel absolutely safe.

Keep an eye on kids. Kids are impulsive and could dart out when it is dangerous.

Don’t litter, pick up after yourself and your family.

Watch out for snakes. And wildlife. And nature.

Don’t trample the bluebonnets.

Don’t trespass on private land and ruin it for everyone else. Just because there isn’t a fence doesn’t mean it’s public property. Many farmers and ranchers have mowed their bluebonnet fields down because they are tired of people trespassing on their property.

 

Where to see the best bluebonnets in Dallas-Fort Worth and around Texas in spring 2022

Following are some areas in Dallas-Fort Worth and around Texas where folks have reported bluebonnets already, or where they're looking reliable again for pretty photos further into spring. Hopefully, just like the flowers, this list will continue to grow.

And, don't forget: Bluebonnets aren't the only wildflower blooming. Indian paintbrush, Indian blanket, evening primrose, Mexican hat, anemone, redbud trees, Mexican plum, elbow bush, and coreopsis are also among the thousands of varieties that paint Texas with color throughout the season.

Dallas-Fort Worth roadsides, fields, and parks

Near D/FW Airport, Irving

While stopping by a highway for photos is never advised, the patches of blue along either side of SH 183 are a pleasant diversion while stopped in rush-hour traffic near D/FW Airport. Just up the road, on northbound SH 161/George Bush Turnpike, they're even more abundant near the Northgate Drive and Walnut Hill exits.

A small field on a hill off 114 at Solana Boulevard in the Trophy Club/Westlake area has become popular for family photos when it's in full bloom.

Although most DFW-area interstates are covered over by construction, it's thrilling to see blue blooms break up all the concrete and dirt. Don't blink or you'll miss them along eastbound I-635 in Dallas near the Miller/Royal exit, and westbound I-30 in Fort Worth near the Hulen Street exit.

Plano's Bluebonnet Trail Greenbelt is popping with blooms. Bluebonnet Trail runs from Central Expressway to Midway Road, following an Oncor power line easement and along Spring Creek Parkway and Chase Oaks Boulevard; it intersects with the Chisholm Trail in the middle of Plano and connects with the Preston Ridge Trail at Carpenter Park. View maps of the trails here and here. 

Pretty patches also pop up north of Dallas proper. One favorite is near the J.C. Penney headquarters on Legacy Drive; another is around Zion Cemetery in Frisco/Little Elm.

Many Dallas parks have "no mow" wildflower areas, where colorful flowers dot pathways and fill fields in spring. According to the Dallas Park & Recreation website, parks with wildflower areas include: Flagpole Hill, Harry Moss Park, Bachman, Grauwyler, Kessler Parkway, Gateway, and many more.

Fort Worth Botanic Garden starting seeing bluebonnets peek out in the parking lot in late March. Other colorful spring blooms to see right now: Texas mountain laurel, peach trees, crabapples, Redbuds, and Dogwood. Cherry blossoms will be here in a few days. Keep up with what's flourishing in the gardens via their Facebook page.

 

Greater North Texas parks, trails, and natural areas

Ennis Bluebonnet Trails, running April 1-30, wind visitors through 40 miles of picturesque wildflowers. While the "Official Bluebonnet Trail of Texas" is open, the blooms aren't peaking yet. That'll happen around mid-April, they say. It usually coincides with the Ennis Bluebonnet Trails Festival, taking place April 8-10 this year (a week earlier due to Easter the following weekend). The festival includes food, shopping, art, and live music. Those interested in making the trek about 40 miles south of Dallas can check out maps and updates on the website and social media channels. Download the Ennis Y’all mobile app to get all the information on your smartphone.

Cedar Hill State Park started dropping wildflower updates in social media posts in late March, especially along mountain bike trails. In addition to bluebonnets right now, you'll see (and smell) fragrant Wild Mexican Plum trees, with more varieties on the way this month.

 

 

Where to Find the BEST Bluebonnet Spots for Photos Near Dallas Fort Worth

Click on the link above for specific locations.

1. Ennis Bluebonnet Trails

2. Las Colinas

3. Fort Worth – Highway 360

4. Frisco – Warren Park’s Freedom Meadow

5. Grapevine – Texan Trail

6. Mansfield – Oliver Nature Park

7. Plano – Bluebonnet Trail

8. George W. Bush Presidential Library – SMU

9. Cedar Hill State Park – Cedar Hill

10. Local DFW Lakes

 

5 Tips for Scouting Texas Bluebonnet Patches

These are wildflowers. Where and when they’ll show up is something that changes from year to year. A place that had a thick carpet last year isn’t guaranteed a repeat performance. Weather plays a big factor in when, where and how bluebonnets bloom.

 

When you get word of a good bluebonnet spot, don’t wait. A few days can make a difference in the quality of the blooms. Word gets around about nice thick patches and if you wait too long, the flowers will have been trampled by little feet and won’t be as fresh.

 

Get out of the cities. While we’ve scouted out some known spots where these flowers pop up every year, you’re not going to find them growing out of the sidewalk in downtown Dallas or Austin. Parks, lakes and backroads are what you want. Everyone has some sort of GPS nowadays so don’t be afraid to get a little lost in the pursuit of the prettiest blooms.

 

Always ask a Texan. If you are in or traveling to an area not represented on our list, the best thing to do is to ask someone who lives there. Just be aware that some people are weird about their favorite bluebonnet spot and consider it akin to giving out the number to their best babysitter.

 

If you see what you think is a good spot, take your pictures! Don’t hold out for a more Instagrammable spot because you might not find it. And if you do, then you take more bluebonnet pictures!

 

 

Bluebonnet Trail

April 1-30, 2022

ENNIS BLUEBONNET TRAILS FESTIVAL:

April 8-10, 2022

Celebrating 70 Years of Ennis Bluebonnet Trails: Ennis was designated by the 1997 State Legislature as the home of the Official Texas Bluebonnet Trail and was designated the Official Bluebonnet City of Texas. From April 1-30,  Ennis showcases over 40 miles of mapped driving Bluebonnet Trails sponsored by the Ennis Garden Club.  These trails are the oldest such trails known in the state, and tens of thousands of visitors make the short trek to Ennis to view this wonderful wildflower show. The Ennis Garden Club will drive the trails to check the bloom status each week starting in April. The Club then reports to the Ennis Welcome Center about the latest status of the bluebonnets so that visitors can be well informed where the best flowers are on the trails at the time of their visit. Each year, the bluebonnets will appear on different trails as these are natural to the area. In Ennis, the bluebonnets typically peak around the 3rd week of April, according to the Ennis Garden Club. This can vary year to year due to weather conditions and terrain, so please check this website or call 972-878-4748 before your visit. The Ennis Welcome Center will be open 7 days a week in April (Closed Easter Sunday).

 

2022 Texas Bluebonnet Roadmap: The 7 best places to see bluebonnets in Texas

Although Texas is reeling from a recent arctic blast, the icy grasp of winter is letting go. The harsh freeze broke branches and froze foliage, but our state flower - the Texas Bluebonnet - is a survivor. Soon, the rolling Texas Hill Country will be painted in beautiful shades of blue as the bluebonnets bloom again! 

 

Now more than ever, Texans look to the great outdoors for fun family activities to get us out of the house, and the Texas Bluebonnet Trail is the perfect opportunity. With so many gorgeous towns on this bluebonnet tour, like Kingsland, Marble Falls, Burnet, Brenham, Ennis, and Austin, you can pick your favorite or plan a road trip to see them all! Read on as we take you on a tour of our favorite spots. 

 

Wildflower Drives

Honey, Stop the Car

Our guide to wildflower drives across Texas

From piney woods to high desert, from barrier islands to bayou, Texas offers plenty of variety in its 268,000 square miles of terrain. Factor in the nine major ecoregions and weather ranging from flood to drought, and the result is 5,000 species of flowering plants that are native to the Lone Star state. There are even six different species of bluebonnets, two of which grow naturally only here, including the Texas bluebonnet. Given this extreme abundance and diversity, you can imagine how difficult it is to select the best wildflower viewing routes for our state.

So we called in the experts, culling years of recommendations from Wildflower Center staff, Texas Highways magazine, Texas Monthly magazine, and our favorite guidebooks and websites. The result is a baker’s dozen of recommended routes throughout the state, all uniquely beautiful, with local blooms, scenic vistas, worthwhile detours and a bit of history too.

Whatever your destination, enjoy the beautiful Texas landscapes as they are blanketed with wildflowers, and remember that there is something lovely to behold at any time of the year. Appreciating nature is all about getting out there.

Explore by Region

Panhandle

Northeast Texas

East Texas

Great Houston

San Antonio Area

Hill Country

Southwest Texas