Recently I’ve been spending a lot of time indoors thanks to my job hunting efforts, so in order to keep my sanity, I decided I needed a little time away from my laptop. There are a lot of options to keep me busy here in Austin, and thankfully some hiking nearby, but with only a few hours to spare, I decided to take a trip out to the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center at the University of Texas Austin.
For any of you who aren’t sure who Lady Bird Johnson was, let me take a moment to refresh your memory or even teach you something new. Claudia Alta Taylor Johnson, or Lady Bird Johnson, was the wife of former U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson, and a native Texan widely known for her conservation efforts and love of wildflowers, which brings me back to the reason I’m writing this post: I too love wildflowers! It’s the only reason a person finds themselves driving 25 minutes into the heart of Austin to visit a garden full of native flowers … that is unless you happen to be a guy racking up brownie points by making your favorite lady happy, at which point you should just ignore the first half of this sentence and take one for the team.
Anyway, since it’s already September I wasn’t expecting there to be a lot of wildflower growth, so I wasn’t disappointed with what I found at the center when I arrived. With that being said, there were still lots of beautiful things to look at. Currently the center is under construction as they add a new exhibit, so their two main trials are closed, which was a little bit of a let down since I would have liked to walk through them, but with plenty of flowers, butterflies, bees, and sculptures around to keep me occupied, I hardly had time to miss them.
I felt at home among the cacti in the main courtyard of the wildflower center and loved the large metal containers filled with overflowing flowers. It was a fairly pleasant day, not too hot by Texas standards, but just hot enough that there weren’t a lot of people wandering around the grounds. There were covered walkways, plenty of benches set back in the growing plants, and lots of pathways taking you to the various areas of the small garden.
I even managed to find some mushrooms growing sporadically in a section of the butterfly garden. Overall, it was a pretty good visit and well worth the drive. I’m definitely going to make a point to come back again during the Spring and Summer months to check out what the gardens have to offer, but for now I will leave you with an extra gallery of flowers and cacti to brighten your day.