Explore Plants

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 

Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Saturday - March 30, 2013

From: Austin, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Seeds and Seeding, Wildflowers
Title: Few bluebonnets on MoPac in Austin
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

The grass fields along Mopac from Lake Lady Bird to Southwest Parkway usually have a grand display of bluebonnets. This year I do not see any color at all. Can you help me understand what is happening to this area?

ANSWER:

Nobody at the Wildflower Center (home of Mr. Smarty Plants) is happy about that, either. Lupinus texensis (Texas bluebonnet) is a winter annual. This means it blooms like crazy in March and April, drops its seeds where they can sleep away the heat of Summer, and waits for the winter rains of December and January. And you know how much rain we had then -  little to nothing. The reason that the Texas Bluebonnet has survived thousands of years of the brutal Texas climate is because its seeds can hide and wait in the soil for better days and some rain, and pop up again in all their glory. We are looking for rain dancers.

 

From the Image Gallery


Texas bluebonnet
Lupinus texensis

Texas bluebonnet
Lupinus texensis

Texas bluebonnet
Lupinus texensis

More Wildflowers Questions

Growing Lupinus perennis in sandy soil.
February 15, 2009 - I want to grow Lupinus perennis for the Karner butterfly. I know it won't grow in clay (my soil is wet clay). Can I plant the plant in a big (20" diameter x 17" tall) rubber pot, and fill the pot w...
view the full question and answer

Year-round wildflower display in Mississippi
June 14, 2007 - I live in central Mississippi and I'm interested in transforming a 2,000 sq. ft. turf area of my yard into a showy wildflower exhibit that will bloom from now(July) until winter and even possibly thr...
view the full question and answer

List of native perennial Texas flowers
March 13, 2006 - Good day, I am searching for a list of native Texas flowers (preferably perennials) for a flower garden. Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Sunlight needs for native wildflower seedlings from Double Oaks TX
January 27, 2014 - Last December I created a flower bed for my parents' backyard and sowed native wildflower seeds (obtained from Native American Seed). The bed is in full sun most of the day, and the seeds are alread...
view the full question and answer

Mosquito-deterring plants for shady hillside
July 05, 2011 - We have a part to full shaded hill side/ native woodland area that was once covered with english ivy..we managed to get rid of all the ivy but now we are overtaken with violets..maybe they are even na...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.