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08 April . 2019

Where to find wildflowers in Austin and the Hill Country in 2019

2019 is turning out to be one of the best years for wildflowers in recent memory. To help you find the bluebonnets, primroses, Indian paintbrushes, winecups and other native Texas bloomers near Sweetwater, we’ve scouted out these wildflower hotspots in Austin and the Texas Hill Country.

Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center. Located about 12 miles southwest of downtown Austin, the Wildflower Center offers stunning displays of wildflowers and other native plants on their grounds, along with educational exhibits and interactive art displays such as Fortlandia. Their Wildflower Central page is a great resource for finding the latest wildflower sightings in the area.

LBJ State Park & Historic Site. Near Johnson City, the LBJ State Park & Historic Site is famous for its wildflowers. Meadows of bluebonnets, Indian paintbrushes, winecups and other wildflowers surround the visitor center, and a nature trail meanders from the center to the adjacent Sauer-Beckmann Living History Farm.

Burnet. Located north of Austin, the town of Burnet is the self-proclaimed Bluebonnet Capital of Texas. The annual Bluebonnet Festival takes place from April 12-14 this year.

Georgetown. While Georgetown has its share of bluebonnets, it’s most famous for its red poppies. In fact, Georgetown is one of the few places in the U.S. where red poppies grow naturally. During World War I, a local soldier, Henry Purl Compton, sent red poppy seeds home to his mother. After she planted them, the flowers spread and have flourished around Georgetown ever since. The 20th annual Red Poppy Festival takes place April 26-28.

Willow City Loop. One of the best wildflower drives in Texas is the scenic 13-mile Willow City Loop, located north of Fredericksburg. The land along the road is privately owned, but there are several places to pull over, get out and enjoy stunning vistas of meadows and valleys filled with wildflowers.

Teravista. Curbed Austin touts our sister community, Teravista, as one of the best places to see wildflowers in Austin and Georgetown. They report: “There are wildflower patches throughout the Round Rock/Georgetown subdivision now, and word is that one of the most beautiful patches is on Westinghouse Road, near the east part of the back entrance.” Check out the link for 15 more places to find wildflowers.

Wildseed Farms. Located just outside of Fredericksburg, Wildseed Farms is the nation’s largest working wildflower farm, with 200 acres of wildflowers and walking trails open seven days a week. Stay to enjoy the vineyards and wine tasting room, along with the incredible gift store and nursery. You can also buy seeds and plant your own wildflowers for next year.

Marble Falls. The Bluebonnet House in Marble Falls is a popular place to see a historic (if endangered) Hill Country stone house that’s usually surrounded by seas of bluebonnets on good years – like this one. The areas all around Marble Falls are filled with wildflowers, and the Blue Bonnet Cafe offers a classic taste of Texas.

Rancho Sienna. Another one of our sister communities, Rancho Sienna in Georgetown, is a great place to see wildflowers, especially around the main entrance and in Sienna Trail and Greenleaf parks.  

Everywhere in the Hill Country. You can’t go anywhere in the beautiful Texas Hill Country this time of year without finding beautiful fields of wildflowers. Check out our Hill Country Recreation guide to discover some of the parks and natural attractions you can explore while the wildflowers are in bloom.

Wildflower etiquette. While you’re out enjoying the wildflowers, please keep a few things in mind. Contrary to popular belief, it’s actually not against the law to pick bluebonnets, but it is bad form. When you pick them, you prevent them from going to seed and making next year’s crop. It’s also bad etiquette to trample wildflowers or crush them by laying on them. Beware of pests like fire ants and snakes when walking off of marked trails. And please observe “No Trespassing” signs.

While you’re out enjoying the wildflowers, check out our Area Guide for some great places to dine out and extend the fun.

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