Residents encouraged to stay safe with bluebonnet season

by | Apr 12, 2019 | Life & Style

Bluebonnets are in full blossom throughout Collin County. DPS advises drivers to use caution when stopping on roadsides for photos. (Wyndi Veigel/The Farmersville Times)

Bluebonnet season in Texas is in full swing and a bumper crop of the state flower can be found on Collin County roadways.

“While there is no law against picking the state flower, laws do exist against damaging or destroying rights-of-way and government property,” DPS Public Information Officer Lt. Lonny Haschel said. “Flower fans must also consider laws against criminal trespassing and make sure they are not on private property when stopping to enjoy or take photos of the wildflowers.”

Stopping to take photos among the flowers is extremely popular and this year, the crops may coincide with the Easter holiday.

In 2019, according to bluebonnet experts, the season will feature taller than normal flowers due to heavy rains that have occurred throughout the year.

Texans and visitors alike will forgo common sense to snap a photo with the state flower. People descend in the spring to see this gorgeous blossom, which are unique to the area and are as well known to Texas as cowboy hats, boots and barbecue.

Those interested in taking bluebonnet photos should be cautious and pay attention when settling in to shoot. Fire ants and snakes can be hidden among the blooms.

It is also important to pay attention to surrounding traffic and to make sure vehicles are parked safely off the roadways.

One great Collin County bluebonnet resource is Mallard Park, along Hwy. 78, near Lavon. The park boasts hundred of flowers and allows cars to park off the roadway.

DPS encourages motorists to be mindful of laws against impeding traffic and exercise caution when slowing down to enjoy the view; and if drivers decide to stop, choose areas with light traffic conditions.

For the safety of yourself and others, consider the following tips:

  • Signal before leaving or entering the roadway.
  • Park off the roadway (off of improved shoulders), parallel to the road in the direction of traffic.
  • Don’t cross lanes of traffic on foot to get to the flowers.
  • Obey signs that prohibit parking on a particular stretch of roadway.

“Remember that failure to follow the rules of the road any time of the year could earn you a ticket. So be careful, be practical and be sure to abide by our laws while enjoying the Texas wildflowers this and every year,” Haschel said.

Those wanting to try their hand at the perfect bluebonnet photos may want to consider the following. Wearing solid colors, especially black or white, will make the bluebonnets stand out in the photo. Try to get as many flowers in the frame as possible, eliminating cars and other items. Shooting many photos with tight crops, vertical and horizontal will help you ultimately when deciding what photo to print.

Additional bluebonnet opportunities also exist further south and into the hill country.

To immerse yourself in bluebonnets, head down to Ennis (about an hour drive south on I-45).

For the past 21 years, Ennis has been the home of the Official Texas Bluebonnet Trail. With more than 40 miles of bluebonnet trails, as mapped by the Ennis Garden Club, Ennis is the go-to location for bluebonnets in the region.

Bluebonnet lovers can pick up a trails map at the Ennis Convention and Visitors Bureau or download the Ennis Y’All mobile app for free to be in-the-know on the trails with the best blooms since the blooms can vary from year to year and trail to trail.

Bluebonnet lovers can fill their tanks with gas, pack a picnic lunch and head out with their cameras to go on a flower hunting adventure.

By Wyndi Veigel • News Editor • [email protected]

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