The Texas Hill Country is known for its astonishing sunsets, expansive views, spring-fed creeks, wooded canyons, massive oak trees and delightful wildlife. But, this time of year, the region is dominated by miles of eye-popping wildflowers, such as Indian paintbrush, black-eyed Susan and especially Texas Bluebonnets, the state flower.

As the first hints of spring appear, the question of the day is, “When will the bluebonnets bloom?” Standing just over 12 inches, the bluebonnet is a mighty big flower in the hearts of Texans. No one can deny its splendor. Historian Jack Maguire even wrote that, “The bluebonnet is to Texas what the shamrock is to Ireland, the cherry blossom to Japan, the lily to France, the rose to England, and the tulip to Holland.”

Most people who have driven near Boot Ranch in the spring have been captivated by the stunning vistas of bluebonnets. Lady Bird Johnson deserves part of the credit for the springtime show, which begins in late-March and continues through early-May. The former first lady, who died in 2007, led the charge for passage of the Highway Beautification Act of 1965. Her husband, President Lyndon B. Johnson, said when the bill was passed that his wife wanted people to see beautiful country sides, not billboards and junkyards. In response to that legislation, wildflowers were planted along many of the nation’s roads, including the Johnsons’ beloved Hill Country.

Visitors can learn more about where to spot wildflowers in the Hill Country by checking the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in Austin.

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