Big Bend National Park Feature
- Travel Tips
- Fodor's Choice
Bluebonnets: the Pride of Texas
Ever since men first explored the prairies of Texas, the bluebonnet has been revered. American Indians wove folktales around this bright bluish-violet flower; early-day Spanish priests planted it thickly around their newly established missions; and the cotton boll and cactus competed fiercely with it for the state flower—the bluebonnet won the title in 1901.
Nearly half a dozen varieties of the bluebonnet, distinctive for flowers resembling pioneers' sunbonnets, exist throughout the state. From mid-January until late March, at least one of the famous flowers carpets the park: the Big Bend (also called Chisos) bluebonnet has been described as the most majestic species, as its deep-blue flower spikes can shoot up to three feet in height. The Big Bend bluebonnets can be found beginning in late winter on the flats of the park as well as along the El Camino del Rio (Highway 170), which follows the legendary Rio Grande between Lajitas and Presidio, Texas.
For information on viewing the bluebonnets at their peak, March through May, call the Texas Department of Transportation Hotline 800/452-9292.
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