9 Best Hill Country Wildflowers To Spot On Your Next Adventure

Well, if so, get excited because even after a bitterly cold winter, the Texas wildflowers are so adapted to cold temperatures that they will bloom beautifully when the spring comes around.

9 Best Hill Country Wildflowers To Spot On Your Next Adventure

There are even some beautiful locations you can stay at if you want to see the beautiful wildflowers in Hill County such as the Dripping Springs Ranch Park. So, whether you just want a day out or a weekend getaway to enjoy the wildflowers, you will see plenty! 

And, if you want a guide to let you know just what you should be looking for, we have all the best wildflowers to look for right here for you! It’s time to enjoy the sunshine and some beautiful foliage! 

1. Texas Bluebonnet ‘Lupinus Texensis’

The Texas bluebonnet is also known as the bluebonnet, Texas lupine, wolf flower, or the buffalo clover. It is uniquely a member of the pea family and is a gorgeous bright blue color. 

It has much larger, and more well-shapen sharp pointed leaves, with more flower heads than other lupines have. Its leaves are light-green, and feel velvety to the touch.

The stems have a cluster of 50 fragrant flowers, deep blue in color, and almost pea-like. At the top of the cluster of flowers, you will find a white point. 

This species of Lupine is often found along highways, as highway departments often plant them, however, gardening clubs also have a love for them. 

2. Indian Paintbrush ‘Castilleja Indivisa’

This beautiful red flower is also known by some other names, such as the Texas Paintbrush, Scarlet Paintbrush, Texas Indian Paintbrush, or Entireleaf Indian Paintbrush. 

It is one of the popular paintbrush flowers, it is annual or biennial and grows to be 6 to 18 inches tall. It has several unbranched stems which grow to form clumps that are topped by very bright-red, paintbrush-shaped spikes. 

The flowers of this plant are less conspicuous than the greenish, and bracts at the base, as they are subtended by showy, and red-tipped bracts. 

These flowers can occasionally have a yellow or even a white variation that is mixed with the reds. 

This and some other species of Castilleja are hemiparasitic, mostly so on grasses, as they penetrate the host roots in order to gain nutrients.

However, if you were to transplant a paintbrush plant it might kill it, so be cautious. Note that they also have a reputation for being unpredictable.

3. Firewheel ‘Gaillardia Pulchella’

Firewheels are also known as Girasol Rojo, or the Indian Blanket. They are members of the Aster family and can grow to be 1 to 2 feet tall. They have a hairy stem, which has many branches and can become wood-like in the latter part of the season. 

Their branch stems have the most leaves at their base but also have showy flower heads that have red at their base and tips of yellow, each leaf will also have 3 teeth at the broader end. 

These well-known flower heads average at 1 to 2 inches across and have a deep red center with a yellow band on the outside. Sometimes 3 cleft rays can be orange or yellow. 

They are frequently found alongside roads and can stand like 4th of July pinwheels. They are popular in cultivation and tolerate dryness and heat really well. Some of these species can be found entirely yellow!

4. Pink Evening Primrose ‘Oenothera Speciosa’

The Pink Evening Primrose is also known as the Mexican Evening Primrose, Pink Ladies, Showy Evening Primrose, or Pink Buttercups. They’re a member of the Ongagracae family. 

They were originally native to grasslands in Nebraska south through Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas to the Northeast of Mexico. They are upright to sprawling in nature, perennial, and can grow 1 to 2 feet. They spread to form colonies. 

They have large flowers with 4 petals and can range from dark pink to white. They have nodding buds that open into pink or white flowers, which sit on the upside of the leaf axils on slender stems. 

Their blossoms are cup-shaped and delicate to the touch, and if you look closely, also have pink or even red veins. They are drought resistant and very hardy, but their flowers can be as tiny as only 1 inch across. 

They open their flowers in the evening and close in the morning, some can open so fast that you can almost observe the movement.

Their populations in the south will open their flowers in the morning and close them in the evening, which can be confusing.

5. Mexican Hat ‘Ratibida Columnifera’

The Mexican Hat is also known as the Upright Prairie Coneflower, Prairie Coneflower, Red-Spike Mexican Hat, or Long-headed Coneflower, or Thimbleflower. This is also a member of the aster family. 

These plants are leafy and branched in their lower parts, then bearing long bare stalks with flower heads of 3 to 7 yellow rays that surround a red-brown disc. Their flower head is sombrero shaped. 

These flowers tend to grow 1 ½ feet tall, however, some have been known to reach 3 feet tall. Their petals can be yellow to dark red, or all red, or sometimes all yellow. 

The flower’s central disc can protrude anywhere from ½ an inch to 2 inches above the petals, which droop. 

The colorful heads resemble the hats that are worn during Mexican fiestas, hence the name. They will often bloom by the thousands, so when you see them you will see many of them! 

6. Winecup ‘Callirhoe Involucrata’

The Winecup flower is also known as the Purple Poppy Mallow and is a member of the Mallow family. 

They have stems that sprawl across the ground up to 3 feet, which can create a thick mat that reaches up to a foot tall!

They have round and hairy leaves which are lobed deeply and cleft. The chalice-shaped 1 ½ – 2 ½ inch wide flowers also have a white spec at the base of their petals, of which there are five. 

The flower heads close in the evenings and open in the morning, after they have been pollinated they will then stay closed.

7. Horsemint ‘Monarda Punctata’

Horsemint is also known as Purple Horsemint, Lemon Beebalm, Lemon Horsemint, Purple Lemon Mint, or Plains Horsemint. It is, unsurprisingly, a member of the mint family. 

It can grow from 1 to 2 feet or more, which is a winter annual that has a unique tuft-like lavender-pink series of whorled flower heads. Each is in the long spike that is subtended by lavender to white leaf-type bracts. 

There will be many stems growing from the base which are lined with pairs of lance-shaped leaves. 

It has a distinctive citrusy scent, hence why it is often called Lemon Beebalm. It is easy to grow and attracts bees and butterflies to it. 

8. Prairie Verbena ‘Glandularia Bipinnatifida’

The Prairie Verbena is also known as the Purple Prairie Verbena, Dakota Mock Vervain, Alfombrilla, Dakota Vervain, or the Moradilla. It is a member of the Verbena family. 

It has gently rounded clusters of symmetrical pink, purple, or lavender flowers that grow on top of stems that have divided leaves, 

This plant will often show brilliant displays of color that can cover acres of land. It also has a variability, where some flowers can be pink, or even light purple.  

This species is a member of a family that contains 75 genera and an insane 3,000 species of herbs, trees, and shrubs, most of which enjoy warm temperate regions and tropical areas. 

9. Plains Coreopsis ‘Coreopsis Tinctoria’

The Plains Coreopsis also known as the Calliopsis, Goldenwave, and Golden Tickseed, is a member of the aster family. It is slender and often grows to 1 to 2 feet. It has annual pinnately-compound foliage. 

It is known for its small, but plentiful flowers that have daisy-like flower heads, with yellow rays that surround a reddish-purple dish. The yellow petals are notch-tipped growing from the flower heads which grow on long stalks. 

This Western annual has made its way from Eastern cultivation and has become widespread over the West and South in disturbed areas. It tends to mostly enjoy moist ditches. However, due to how showy it is, it is also extensively cultivated.

To Conclude

When you venture out to Hill Country, you are bound to find endless different types of wildflowers, however, these are some of the most common, and most beautiful there, so you should keep a lookout for these 9 gorgeous flowers. 

However, there are plenty more you should keep a lookout for, with Texas Hill Country being full of beautiful wildflowers.

You may also find the Common Sunflower, the Texas Lantana, perhaps Clasping Leaf Cone-Flowers, or an Engelmann Daisy or two!

When you venture out into Hill County who knows what you may find! Some of these can even be planted in your garden too!

Diane Peirce

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