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Hill Country Portal
A Powerful Information Database & Gateway Service for the Texas Hill Country
Focus Topic Profile For:
IN THE TEXAS HILL COUNTRY
Scenic Hill Country wildflower routes, guides and tips are outlined in some of the resources below.
Lady Bird Johnson was our champion of wildflowers because of the beauty and joy they bring to so many visitors and residents alike. She was a tireless promoter of beautification of America. Her flower roots are right here in the Hill Country in Johnson City and Stonewall.
WILDFLOWER FACTS FROM TXDOT: See Web
- There are over 5,000 species of wildflowers in the state of Texas.
- TxDOT nurtures them through their carefully planned mowing policies.
- All species of the Bluebonnet are considered the State Flower. There are also white bonnets and pink bonnets. These will not necessarily bloom the next year true to color if they are mixed among bluebonnets. This is due to their being pollinated by bees and if the bee goes from a bluebonnet to a white bonnet and pollinates the white bonnet, then it could come back as a bluebonnet.
- More than 20% of wildflowers are in the Sunflower family.
- Indian Paintbrush comes in colors ranging from orange to yellow to purple.
- Goldenrod is often confused with ragweed which causes hayfever. However, the goldenrod is not a wind pollinated plant. It is pollinated by bees.
- Yucca plants are often found in West Texas and items such as soap and baskets can be made from them.
- Prickly poppies have branched, prickly stems and are an abundant supplier of pollen for insects. They come in white, red and pink colors.
- Horsemint is in the Mint Family and tea can be made from its leaves. It also attracts bees, butterflies and hummingbirds who are seeking nectar. It blooms from May to September.
- Sideoats Grama is the State Grass of Texas. It is a warm season grass growing from July to September.
- Little Bluestem has an extensive root system.
- Buffalograss is excellent for erosion control and can survive short mowings.
- Sand Lovegrass is sometimes called "Ice Cream Grass" because livestock love to eat it and the tops of it look like ice cream.
- The department mows and cares for 800,000 acres of right of way.
We welcome inquiries, comments and submission of updates, additions, corrections & digital photos,
without compensation. Send to Editor at:
BILL PURCELL, TEXAS WILDFLOWERS 2007: Web
CENTRAL TEXAS WILDFLOWERS: Web
EDWARDS DIGITAL PHOTOGRAPH GALLERIES: Web
GARY LIPE'S WILDFLOWERS: Web
GARY REGNER PHOTOGRAPHY, WILDFLOWER PICTURES: Web. Great for identifying flowers.
HERRONSTOCK PHOTO GALLERY: Web
LANDSCAPES OF TEXAS HILL COUNTRY: Facebook. Excellent wildflower landscape submissions by Facebook participants.
MURRY GRIGSBY, TEXAS WILDFLOWERS: Web
JO SPENCER, TEXAS WILDFLOWERS: Web. Lots of great photos accessible through the index at the bottom of the page.
RICH OLIVIERI, TEXAS BLUEBONNETS: Web
ROB GREEBON PHOTOGRAPHY, TEXAS HILL COUNTRY WILDFLOWERS: Web. A blog-style presentation of photos and scenic locations.
TEXAS WILDFLOWER REPORT: Facebook
TEXAS WILDFLOWERS IN THE HILL COUNTRY OF CENTRAL TEXAS: Web
WILDFLOWERS OF TEXAS: Web
WHERE TO SEE THE BEST BLUEBONNETS IN 2018: Click jasonrweingart.com/blog/where-to-see-the-best-bluebonnets-in-2018
THIS YEAR'S CALENDAR OF WILDFLOWER FESTIVALS IN THE HILL COUNTRY: Click HillCountryPortal.com/hillcountryfestivals.html. Most are in April and May.
HILL COUNTRY WILDFLOWER TOUR: Web, select Travel, then Wildflowers. TXDOT Wildflower Hotline: 800-452-9292. Recording announces where wildflowers are to be found. Travel counselors available 8a-6p. Information available by 7 regions of the state, including the Hill Country. The TXDOT Department's wildflower effort is part of a vegetation management program encouraging the growth of native species that require less mowing and care. April is considered the prime month for blooming wildflowers. TXDOT spreads more than 33,000 pounds of wildflower seeds (over 30 varieties) along Teas highway rights of way each year.
KEEP BANDERA BEAUTIFUL: Web
LADY BIRD JOHNSON WILDFLOWER CENTER: Imagine a place where everything is in its place. A place where the gardens, trails, and architecture celebrate the natural and cultural heritage of the Texas Hill Country. A place where people reconnect with the land and learn to appreciate the natural beauty, economic value, and environmental necessity of native plants. This place is the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, in Austin. Web
LAKES AND HILLS, BURNET - BLUEBONNET CAPITAL: Web
LOST SPRINGS RANCH: Web
RICH OLIVIERI, WILLOW CITY LOOP: Web
SCENIC ROUTES: One of the most popular half-day routes is TX 16 from Medina through Kerrville to Llano and San Saba. US 281, in parallel with TX 16, is also popular. The Willow City Loop in Willow City in north Gillespie County is particularly wonderful and an iconic area when folks think of Hill Country wildflowers (see more below). Most of the quiet back roads are where the real treasures are found, especially in the north Blanco County area, and Gillespie County. Truth is, if you just take your time traveling the roadways you will see the magnificent beauty of Hill Country wildflowers (provided there was rain in the spring). Happy scenic traveling!
TEXAS BLUEBONNET SIGHTINGS: waywardimagery.com, Facebook (for latest sightings), by PerriAngela Wickham, Publisher, photographer, teacher, tour guide
WILD ABOUT TEXAS WILDFLOWERS: Web. Sightings
WILDFLOWERS IN THE TEXAS HILL COUNTRY: VISIT Fredericksburg TX: Web. YouTube video on wildflowers in Fredericksburg
"WILDFLOWERS OF THE TEXAS HILL COUNTRY", a book by Marshall Enquist
- Bluebonnets: Mid-March, and peak the second week of April
- Greenthread: Late April and into June
- Indian Blanket: Late April through May
- Texas Paintbrush: Mid-March through April, and often grow side-by-side with bluebonnets
- Winecup: April through June
PLANT CONSERVATION ALLIANCE: Web. National Park Service initiative.
RICE UNIVERSITY, WILDFLOWERS: Web
WILDFLOWERS IN BLOOM (A&M): Web. Horticulture Program, Texas Cooperative Extension
TEXAS DEPT OF TRANSPORTATION (TXDOT) WIDLFLOWER RESOURCES: Web. Links to an extensive list of resource articles within the TXDOT system.
TEXAS PARKS AND WILDLIFE WILDFLOWER RESOURCES: Web. Links to lots of articles within the TPWD system, plus pictures and sightings. 800-452-9292 (counselors 8a-6p)
JACK COUNTY TEXAS WILDFLOWERS: Web. Photos
PHOTOS BY COLETTE: Web. Pictures of Texas Wildflowers
TEXAS FLORA GROUP: Facebook
TEXAS PLANTS AND INVERTEBRATES GROUP: Facebook
TEXAS WILDFLOWERS GROUP: Facebook
WILDFLOWER HAVEN: Web
"WILDFLOWERS OF TEXAS", A book by Geyata Ajilvsgi
WILDFLOWER SEED FARMS: Web. Located in Fredericksburg, TX. This commercial farm has an amazing display (fields) of vibrant wildflowers in season, along with a expansive store selling everything plant-oriented.
EASY WILDFLOWERS: Web. About wildflower seeds and wildflower potted plants native to the Midwest and Eastern USA.
NATIVE AMERICAN SEED COMPANY: 325-446-3600; 3791 US 377, Junction, TX 76849. Web. Seeds & bulbs-wholesale
STOPPED VEHICLES ON ROADWAY: Too often we see visitors stopping their vehicles in the middle of the road, doors open wide, and everyone running out to the flowers with cameras pointed. This is a horribly dangerous vehicle practice, for you and others. The next vehicle driver coming around the curve may not see you, the kids and grandma in time. And, it is illegal to park in the middle of the road. Further, some counties in Texas do not permit stopping along some roads, especially Ranch and Farm to Market roads.
TRESPASSING: If the land is "posted" (No Trespassing signs or purple tipped fence posts), stay off their property. It is the law! And, just because you don't see a fence or such signs, the property belongs to others and you have no right to transgress. Whether by foot or vehicle, don't go on private property. You must get permission from a property owner to enter their private property. Trespassing is a criminal act and punishable. Please be respectful.
SNAKES, FIRE ANTS, SKUNKS, SPIDERS & OTHER CRITTERS: These local residents have claim to the landscape. Invade their territory and you might pay a huge price. in the spring, mama rattlers will emerge with newly hatched young. They seek warm sunshine to lay in and nurse their young. They become aggressive and will chase you. Watch your dogs and children.
DON'T PICK FLOWERS: Simply put, wildflowers do not belong to you. Left alone, they will go to seed and hopefully reappear next year. If you pick them, the next visitor will miss the opportunity to enjoy them. There are laws against damaging or destroying rights-of-way and government property. Certainly you should not dig up clumps of flowers. "Take Photos Not Wildflowers"
TEXAS DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY - TIPS & GUIDE: A summary of their guidance . . .
- Be mindful of laws against impeding traffic.
- Exercise caution when slowing down to enjoy the view.
- If you decide to stop, choose areas with light traffic conditions.
- Signal before leaving or entering the roadway.
- Park off the roadway (off of improved shoulders), parallel to the road in the direction of traffic.
- Don’t cross lanes of traffic on foot to get to the flowers.
- Obey signs that prohibit parking on a particular stretch of roadway.
- Failure to follow the rules of the road any time of the year could earn you a ticket.
- Be careful, be practical and be sure to abide by our laws while enjoying the Texas wildflowers.
SANDY ROAD GUEST HAUS:
Upscale Western-style Guest House Lodging
in a Beautiful Ranch Setting in the Gorgeous Texas Hill Country
Reservations & Information: 281-300-7177
9242 RR 1320 (Sandy Road), Johnson City, TX 78636
Web: SandyRoadGuestHaus.com Email: info@SandyRoadGuestHaus.com
Come Relax & Enjoy!
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