Scenic USA - Texas

Bluebonnet Trail

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Texas Bluebonnets - State Flower of Texas - Willow City Loop, Gillespie County

Photos by Jason Merlo
Jason Merlo Photography

     Native to Texas, pastures and open fields turn into seas of blue during the first few weeks of April. Happy in most any type of soil, bluebonnets do well in full sun and prefer a gentle sloping hillside. Appreciated for centuries, bluebonnets grow naturally throughout Texas. And as you could easily guess, the official flower of Texas must be the bluebonnet. Well, it just wasn't that easy. Texas legislators took this vote very seriously in 1901, and the dainty subject turned into a heated debate. Support for the cotton flower and cactus bloom quickly faded and a unanimous vote selected Lupinus subcarnosus, or the common bluebonnet. Llano County Bluebonnets and Indian Paintbrushes Well the vote only brought on more debate from fellow Texans, expressing their preferences for showier strains of the Lupinus texensis. It took 70 years to solve the dilemma, voting to accept any variety of bluebonnet. So today, the Lone Star State honors all five species of bluebonnets.
     Often accompanied by Indian paintbrushes, Texas Hill Country is noted for its vast displays of bluebonnets. Burnet, the Bluebonnet Capital of Texas, celebrates the Bluebonnet Festival during the second week of April. Ennis, designated the official Bluebonnet City of Texas, is home to the state's Official Texas Bluebonnet Trail. This photograph was taken in Gillespie County on the Willow City Loop, one of the best wildflower routes in the heart of the Texas Hill Country. With ample rainfall already, it appears that fields of Texas bluebonnets may be one more reason to celebrate spring.

   Directions to the Willow City Loop


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