CEDAR HILL STATE PARK & CEDAR RIDGE PRESERVE
Just a skip away from the DFW metroplex lies Cedar Hill State Park and Cedar Ridge Preserve, both parks open to the public and great locations for bluebonnets and other wildflowers. It’s hard to say exactly where flowers will bloom this year, but we recommend trying the Penn Farm Loop (0.5 miles) and the Talala Trail (2 miles) as each pass through a range of habitats suitable for wildflower blooms. At the Cedar Ridge Preserve, it’s pretty easy for us to recommend the aptly named Bluebonnet Trail. Try this nearly 1 mile loop to explore the preserve and spot some of those seasonal displays of spring color!
Inks Lake State Park
Inks Lake is a well known and loved park just northwest of Austin that might be better known for boating and fishing. But if you visit in the spring time, typically late March, the trails come alive with a variety of wildflowers: Mexican hat, Indian blanket and paintbrush and of course, Texas bluebonnet. Combining the Pecan Flats and Lake Trail will provide you a great mixture of these flowers as well as varying topography and landscape. Read more about this trail on our Inks Lake park page here.
Big Bend National Park
You may scratch your head when you hear there is an abundance of wildflowers out west in the Chihuahuan Desert but believe us when we say it might be the best place to see them around the state! Averaging 10 inches of rain year round, the desert of Big Bend National Park will surprise visitors every year who arrive anytime from mid February through April. The bluebonnets can be 2-3 feet tall here and there is a variety of blooms occurring around the park from ocotillo, sotol, cactus, agave and more. A drive around the park will show you plenty of examples, but for those looking to immerse themselves in the beauty of the backcountry, head up into the Chisos Mountains and explore the South Rim for even more. Take a look at some of these other trails for budding patches of spring blooms: the Hot Springs Trail, Mule Ears Spring Trail, and around Santa Elena Canyon.
Note: some wildflower seasons are better than others, so watch for bloom reports coming from the area.
Davy Dogwood Park
In the small town of Palestine, you’ll find Davy Dogwood Park which is home to some of the biggest blooms of dogwood trees around the state. When the park is in full bloom, it will appear as if a snow storm had blown through East Texas and dropped a fresh blanket across the forest canopy. With the contrast between stark white and rich green and full of fragrance, the dogwoods decorate the trails, the park picnic area, and the roadways that twist and turn through the hillsides. The Texas Dogwood Trails Celebration is hosted by the City of Palestine and will be ongoing the last two weeks of March and the first week of April. Learn more and plan your trip by visiting their site.