Bluebonnets in 2020

I remember my grandmother, God rest her soul, saying "You get what you get and you'll like it."

And so it was with the bluebonnet season of 2020. While not a prolific year for Texas’ favorite wildflower - actually pretty subpar - there were still some patches of blue to be found. For whatever reason – lack of rainfall, fast-growing grasses, or other reason - bluebonnets were not as plentiful. While I covered close to 1,000 miles of driving and searching for the color blue, the best locations I found were in the northern parts of the Texas Hill Country around Mason – and those were mostly roadsides and shallow fields.

I'll start with my last image I took - a few weeks ago -and this is actually a mix of bluebonnets and prairie paintbrush - and is one of my favorites of the season - taken just south of Mason:

Prarie Paintbrush and Bluebonnets 407-1

Prairie paintbrush are mixed in among a small patch of bluebonnets in this sunset image taken in the hill country. The slope of this hill allowed me to get the camera down low - at petal level of these colorful wildflowers - as the last light of evening filled the spring sky.

It was a small patch, but by staying low and focusing on the immediate blooms, I think that photograph turned out nicely thanks to a fleeting sunset.

Now, backtracking to the beginning of the bluebonnet season, there were some nice scenes along the roads, but not much depth (off-road). Here is a photograph from a county road between Round Mountain and Highway 71.

Spring County Road Bluebonnets 407-1

On a beautiful spring afternoons in the Texas Hill Country, the sides of county roads are often lined with bluebonnets, making for easy and relaxing driving to take in all this area has to offer. This little road was found not far off of Highway 71 near Round Mountain.

I had to get low to frame these bluebonnets to make them look pretty good. Next is an image taken from 2019 along the same road:

Hill Country Bluebonnet Drives 413-1

Bluebonnets lined this quiet county road on a early April morning. Behind me, dark clouds were closing fast. In the distance, I could hear the cows mooing. But for a few minutes, this was a beautiful scene - bluebonnets, green trees, a winding road, and soft blue and white skies…. and that makes this, in my opinion, one of the best drives in the Texas Hill Country.

As can be seen, last year was a bit better in this area. But I still appreciated this year's color.

One of my favorite drives in good years is 152 between Llano and Castell. This year, some bluebonnets did sprinkle the roadsides, but not as much as in years' past. Here is a comparison from this year to a few years ago. Both images were taken in the same location, just different sides of the road. First, this year:

Bluebonnet Road in the Shade 408-1

When I passed this old oak tree with its leaves reaching out over the a rural road, I had to stop and photograph the bluebonnet lined path. I also loved the afternoon clouds as they spread out across the spring sky.

Compare this year to 2010:

Texas Highways and Bluebonnets

On a stretch of highway between Llano and Castell in the Texas Hill Country, wildflowers often line the road in spring months. April of 2010 was no different. The bluebonnets were abundant under sunny afternoon skies. I think I could drive roads like this every day.

A well-known stop along Highway 29 is the little Methodist church in Art. Here is a comparison from this year to year's past. First, this year:

The Church in Art, Texas 407-1

The little church in Art, Texas, not far from Mason, is well known as a photogenic location.

And one from 2015:

Bluebonnets in Late Afternoon - Art, Tex

Bluebonnets in late afternoon grace the land around the Methodist Church in Art, Texas, in the Hill Country.

Still, there were some nice scenes to be found. I ran into a friend along a little dirt road south of Mason - hadn't seen him since photographing bluebonnets in Big Bend in the spring of 2019. And this evening provided the most amazing sunset of the spring thus far (and this area has been barren for the last several years, so it was nice surprise to see it back):

Bluebonnet Glory in March 331-2

Tucked away in Mason County on a small dirt road, a field of bluebonnets sprinkled with white prickly poppies colors the landscape in a sea of blue. Adding to the majesty of the landscape, a beautiful sunset brought an glorious close to the spring evening in the hill country.

And one last image to share - this taken north of Mason using my drone (I am have an FAA part 107 license to fly). This aerial view is two horizontal images stitched together to show the winding road lined with bluebonnets as it pushes into the distance:

Bluebonnet Drive from the Sky 407-1

This beautiful aerial view of bluebonnets that line the road was taken with a drone on a perfect spring afternoon in the Texas Hill Country. While my drone was only in the air for about one minute, I did not see another car on this road for the entire time I was there.

Now that the bluebonnets are fading, I'm hoping we'll have a more colorful May wildflower season with the Indian blankets being my favorite. But as Grandma said, I'll take what I get and I'll like it. And I am thankful for even this past season of sparse bluebonnets!

Stay safe, everyone, and stay safe out there.

~ Rob

Colorful prairie paintbrush are surrounded by bluebonnets in this evening photograph from the Texas Hill Country. The evening...

Prairie Paintbrush and Bluebonnets 407-2

Colorful prairie paintbrush are surrounded by bluebonnets in this evening photograph from the Texas Hill Country. The evening sky was fading but there was just enough light left to show off this beautiful and quaint scene along a quiet road in the Hill Country.

These bluebonnet images are for sale as prints, canvas, and on metal. All images are copyrighted by Rob Greebon Photography LLC. If you have any questions, please contact me!