The Texas Hill Country, west of Austin in south central Texas, is ablaze with wildflowers each spring, when Texas bluebonnets, primroses, Indian paintbrush, and many more charming varieties turn the landscape into ribbons of color. The blossoms usually start blooming around March. Peak season is March and April.
The best way to tour Hill Country is to make Austin a jumping-off point for a lazy drive to small cities like Fredericksburg, Seguin, San Marcos, and Kerrville, among many others. Other flowers that are part of the picture-perfect panorama include verbena, coreopsis, phlox, and beebalm.
Do not forget to take in the pleasures of Austin while you are there—like barbecue, terrific Tex-Mex, plus live music galore. These are some of the best places to find, learn about, and celebrate the jewels in the crown of the Hill Country.
Wildflower Season Sometimes Comes Sooner
If you do a little research into the type of winter the Hill Country area had, you might find that if the area had a milder winter, the wildflowers might start blooming sooner than March. If the area gets ample fall and winter rains (which promotes good wildflower displays), and the area has warmer than usual weather in February, you might start to see Texas mountain laurel popping out at the end of February. Laurel usually emerge at the first signs of warmth. The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin is a great resource that gives a wildflower forecast for the Hill Country region.
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Founded in 1982, the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is a botanical garden in Austin that is dedicated to inspiring the conservation of native plants. You can learn about plant life while enjoying the peaceful tranquility in a beautiful setting brimming with native blooms. The wife of President Lyndon B. Johnson was known for her work, both during her time in the White House and later, on conservation and her interest in beautifying and preserving the American landscape. She was the driving force behind the Highway Beautification Act, which became law in 1965.
The Wildflower Center was founded by the former first lady Lady Bird Johnson and Helen Hayes and became a part of The University of Texas at Austin in 2006.
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From March through October, you can visit Wildseed Farms to see wildflowers in bloom. Usually, April is a prime time to visit and take a walk through "the meadows," which features a walking trail through trial gardens of wildflower seed varieties, new seed varieties being tested, and grasses. And you don't just get to look—Wildseed Farms lets you make your own wildflower bouquet from a "picking" section.
Wildseed Farms has been growing fields of wildflowers for the production of seed since 1983. Wildseed Farms is one of the nation's largest working wildflower farms with more than 200 acres in Fredericksburg, Texas alone. There is no charge for admission. The Wildflower Market Center is open year-round, seven days a week.
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The Willow City Loop
Fredricksburg's Willow City Loop is 13 miles of country road winding its way through some of the oldest and most unique geology in the Texas Hill Country. This spectacular, rugged terrain is awe-inspiring any time of the year and is downright gorgeous during wildflower season. The two-lane road winds through canyons carved by picturesque Coal Creek and over hilltops where the views are stunning. During the peak of wildflower season, the hillsides and low-lying meadows are ablaze with the colors of a multitude of wildflower varieties.
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In the hub of the Texas Hill Country lies Kerrville, a Texas community of 20,000 that sits on the Edwards Plateau eco-region, which is noted for its rugged country of stony hills, broad divides, rangy cedar, towering cypress, and the beautiful Guadalupe River.