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4/15/2017 12:59 AM

Some Wildflowers in a Sea of Grass

Valek RD Bluebonnet field 4/14/2017

Trip Report: 4/14/2017

Areas Covered: Mexia, Prairie Hill, Corsicana, Ennis

Summary: Green grass as far as the eye can see is the honest and most accurate description of what I saw on my trip from Houston to Dallas through Mexia, Prairie Hill, Corsicana and Ennis.  This year should be titled the year of the grass.  At least the year of green.  If you have been waiting for your chance to photograph a landscape of green rolling hills dotted with green trees with various livestock grazing, then this is your year. If you have been looking for fields of solid colors from the blues, red and yellows of wildflowers they are few and far between (I now know first-hand what that expression means). 

For us wildflower photographers I have painted a grim picture, but as we have already seen there are some gems of wildflower beauty in all regions.  I did not see field filled solid with the color of wildflowers, but I found several that were in stages of lightly sprinkled to painted with swatches or covered with broad ribbons of color.  This did produce some interesting scenes mixed in with the rich tones of green.

Here are the highlights of the main areas I traveled:

I-45: Just patches and strips of yellow from greenthread or groundsel and the pink-white from pink evening primrose.  This seems to be the year of the primrose. I saw some nearly solid stretches of primrose along I-45 and other roads I traveled. Also, some fields with scattered patches of it.

US 84 and Prairie Hill: Just the hint of bluebonnets in the usual fields. The fields along FM-73 east of Prairie Hill has a dusting to spotted coverage of tiny plants with tiny blooms. Nothing worth photographing for me.

Texas 31:  One very photographic field with mixed color about 9 miles west of Corsicana. Some other fields with partial coverage of bluebonnets. This was phone and DSLR worthy and I spent more than a few minutes there.

Ennis Area:

Overall, based on what I saw, I would grade Ennis as below average. To say Ennis had an average year would be lowering the bar some.  However, I did see a few nice scenes myself and saw photos of other locations like the Meadow View Nature Area.  It was not the worst by far that I have seen Ennis in the past ten plus years I have visited it. Blooms are full bloom, but many still looked good where not trampled and should be good for viewing through the Easter weekend.

FM-1181: Small fields partially covered with smaller plants and smaller blooms. There is one field mostly covered mixed in with small cedar trees.  I did not see a Garden Club welcome sign or sign from the property owners inviting people to enter, and yet I saw people sitting right in the midst of the blooms to get that “in the bluebonnets” photo!  [Texas Wildflower Report is all about the love for our Texas Wildflowers and about respecting the wildflowers and private property.  We do not condone nor promote trampling the wildflowers nor entering private property without proper permission from the owners.]

Telico and Cody Roads: These two roads off FM-1181 east of Ennis had some nice small fields partially covered with bluebonnets (once again tiny blooms and smaller plants). One was at least phone camera worthy.

Valek RD: This road goes north off of FM-85 just east of 85 and I-45.  There’s a really nice and nearly fully covered field of bluebonnets with grazing cattle.  It was pretty enough for me to stop (see photo above).

Mach RD: Sub-sonic this year.  There is good coverage over most of the main field that starts at Walker Creek RD and goes back along Mach RD, but the coverage is not solid and once again the plants are smaller with tiny blooms.  I have seen Mach RD field much worse, but having seen it in 2012 fully covered with solid blue, the bar is set high.  Also note:  FM-85 is torn up from Mach RD going back towards Ennis for several miles. 

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