Why there are bluebonnets along the highway in Texas

The Lone Star State was the first state in the union to begin planting wildflowers along highways, which has more benefits than just making Texas beautiful.

a field of bluebonnets with a road down going the upper left corner.

There’s really nothing like a springtime drive among the bluebonnets.

Photo by Jonathan Cutrer via OpenVerse

Did you know Texas was the first state to plant flowers along the highway?

The Wildflower Program was created in 1932 not only to beautify your commute, but also stabilize soil, provide reliable ground cover, and reduce maintenance and litter along roadways.

TxDOT sows about 30,000 pounds of wildflower seeds annually in observation of the program. The program also allows workers to mow along the highways less frequently, which provides habitats for 900+ animal species.

These efforts were lauded by Lady Bird Johnson, who provided grants to TxDOT for its work and spearheaded the Highway Beautification Act of 1965 to help make the effort more widespread across the nation.

Earlier this month, we asked our readers what their favorite native flower was. We can’t say we’re surprised that 67% of y’all chose bluebonnets, followed by 13% of you choosing the pink evening primrose.

Familiarize yourself with some of the local flora.

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