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Where to see wildflowers in East Texas

Late winter annuals and perennials lead the 2021 flora parade along Texas highways and state lands within our diverse ecoregions and vernal landscapes.

TYLER, Texas — Spring is here and that means we're ushering in Texas’ amazing spring wildflower season.

Late winter annuals and perennials lead the 2021 flora parade along Texas highways and state lands within our diverse ecoregions and vernal landscapes.

Texas bluebonnets typically peak at the end of March through mid-April. Bluebonnets often start blooming near Interstate 10 between San Antonio and Houston and then farther north toward the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. The native range of Texas bluebonnets is primarily the Hill Country and Blackland Prairie Ecoregions, although Texans have seeded these flowers well beyond.

“Recent Texas flora Facebook posts, and photos from native plant enthusiasts, that I received during the winter storm included blooming bluebonnets covered in ice in central Texas,” said Jason Singhurst, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) botanist. “Believe it or not though, most native perennial or biennial plants such as bluebonnets fared just fine under the insulated snow and ice. If we can get some steady rain in the coming weeks and temperatures stay in mid-80’s or below through April, it should be a great Texas bluebonnet spring.”

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

Singhurst says that he anticipates that this spring will allow for a very promising wildflower season in the Big Bend and far west Texas region. Previous years have had extremely dry winters but this season will likely be more colorful due to increased wet weather over this winter. In central Texas, Singhurst anticipates that residents will see many vegetative bluebonnets, Engelmann’s daisy, Blackfoot daisy, Drummond’s skullcap, Lindheimer’s paintbrush, Missouri primrose, prairie fleabane, and many others.

Texans who 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. The platform also allows other plant enthusiasts to assist one another in identification of species throughout the state.

WHERE TO SEE WILDFLOWERS IN EAST TEXAS

Wildflowers are blooming in state parks across Texas! 

Check out this list of East Texas parks where you can see nature's paintings:

  • Atlanta State Park - 927 Park Road 42, Atlanta, TX
  • Caddo Lake State Park - 245 Park Road 2, Karnack, TX
  • Cooper Lake State Park South Sulphur Unit - 1690 FM 3505, Sulphur Springs, TX
  • Daingerfield State Park - 455 Park Road 17, Daingerfield, TX 
  • Fort Boggy State Park - 4994 Highway 75 South, Centerville, TX
  • Lake Bob Sandlin State Park - 341 State Park Road 2117, Pittsburg, TX 
  • Lake Livingston State Park - 300 Park Road 65, Livingston, TX 
  • Lake Tawakoni State Park - 10822 FM 2475, Wills Point, TX 
  • Martin Creek Lake State Park - 9515 County Road 2181D, Tatum, TX 
  • Mission Tejas State Park - 19343 State Highway 21 E., Grapeland, TX 
  • Purtis Creek State Park - 14225 FM 316 N., Eustace, TX 
  • Tyler State Park - 789 Park Road 16, Tyler, TX

For a list of all the state parks in Texas, click here. For a calendar of events planned at the parks, click here.

Did you know there are also designated wildflower trails in the Lone Star State?

Below, you'll find a list of wildflower trails that are great to visit on the weekends or your day off:

  • Ennis Bluebonnet Trails (April 1 - 30) - The Ennis Bluebonnet Trails has more than 40 miles of mapped driving bluebonnet trails. For the trail map, click here.
  • Texas Wildflower Trails - The Texas Wildflower trails connects the Rusk County towns of Henderson, Kilgore, Mt. Enterprise, New London, Overton and Tatum through a beautifully landscaped drive. For the trail map, click here.
  • Wildflower Trails of Texas - The trail covers rural sections of highways 49, 155 and 11. The area connects Linden, Avinger and Hughes Springs. For the trail/roadway map, click here.

If you have any wildflower photos, text them to us at (903) 600-2600!

Credit: CBS19