You may have noticed a little more color in the medians across the City of Richardson making your drive to and from work more beautiful. You may have even stopped by a local park to take photos. The wildflowers that the city planted in the fall are finally blooming.
Bobby Kinser, Assistant Parks Superintendent, said the Parks and Recreation staff that are involved in the planting process take a lot of gratification in seeing how much Richardson residents love the wildflowers.
Kinser, who was involved in the City’s wildflower program when it first began more than 30 years ago, said the city uses a mix of flowers called the “Richardson Mix.” A lot of the time the flowers will bloom at the same time, but this year and in previous years flowers bloom in phases. The bachelor button, also known as the cornflower, always blooms first. It is a predominantly blue plant. Then, the rocket larkspur will start to show. It is a cone shaped plant that is purple, blue and white. Finally, the corn poppies bloom. Kinser describes them as a “really brilliant, bright red.”
“I love them. I think they’re gorgeous. They’re just a beautiful, really delicate looking flower, Kinser said.
Typically, a full bloom occurs in the middle to end of April. As the temperatures continue to rise the flowers will lose their blooms and die. Most flowers are spent by the middle of May.
Be sure to check out the nearly 50 acres of wildflowers planted around the city. The most prominent location for viewing this year is Crowley Park. There are about 6-7 acres of wildflowers in that location. Near City Hall and the Library there are about 2-3 acres that are blooming. Breckinridge Park typically has about 10-15 acres, however a lot of the seeds were lost to late season floods, according to Kinser. Of course, you can find wildflowers at all the neighborhood parks. Each park can have anything up to a half-acre of plantings.
“I think it helps set Richardson apart from other communities because we’re doing something that a lot of other communities don’t do,” Kinser added.
This wild tradition resulted in another beloved tradition in Richardson, the Wildflower! Arts & Music Festival, which debuted almost 30 years ago at Breckinridge Park.
Observing the wildflowers and taking pictures are encouraged, but please do not pick or damage them. The are for everyone to enjoy. More information about the wildflowers can be found at www.cor.net/bloomtown.