Friday, April 19, 2013

Totally Texas -- Tracking Texas bluebonnets

My daughter mentioned that a friend (and new mom) was looking for places to take bluebonnet pictures. So, Molly, this one’s for you. I’m happy to report the perky blue flowers now blanket pastures, parks and roadsides all the way into North Texas. And nowhere better than in Ennis, about half an hour’s drive south of Dallas, off Interstate 45.

They’re just in time for Ennis’s annual Bluebonnet Trails Festival this Saturday and Sunday (April 20-21). But with recent rains, I’d expect the flowers to last at least through the end of April.

The Ennis Garden Club updates maps of the best country roads for viewing bluebonnets. Personally, I’m recommending the north trail, reached from Exit 259 (FM 318) off I-45. I took the picture illustrating this post on Sugar Ridge Road, part of the north trail, this past Wednesday, April 17.

The garden club offers frequently updated maps and directions, at

Although lands bordering the trails are private and often fenced, this Sugar Ridge site featured a stretch of open field with wide shoulders for pulling out of traffic. It’s among the places the garden club lists as available for taking pictures amid the bluebonnets instead of just from the roadside. Members of the classic automobile club, Cool Cars of Waxahachie, added contrasting color to the scene on my visit. For other recommended sites for “in-the-blue” pictures, see the above link.

And while you’re wading through the flowers, take time to stop and sniff. Fields of bluebonnets waft a sweet pea-like fragrance.

Bluebonnets bloom for most of April, but Ennis celebrates them especially with its Bluebonnet Trails Festival this weekend. The Ennis Garden Club’s information and souvenir booth opens today at 9 .m. at Pierce Park, downtown on Northwest Main Street. A street market of arts, crafts and foods opens Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m., with additional music and entertainment both days.

And since where there are bluebonnets, there are photographers, of course there’s a photo contest with entries due May 31.

For more lore about bluebonnets and Ennis, also see April 9, 2012’s post, “Skies of blue fall on Texas” at this site.

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