The Bluebonnet Trails
The Ennis area is known for their spring showing of bluebonnets and some 42 miles of trails which have been created there to drive around. The Texas Legislature named them “The Official Bluebonnet Trail of Texas.” Bluebonnets are the state flower of Texas and their wider spread of distribution in the state was instigated by President Lyndon B Johnson’s wife (Lady Bird Johnson) in her attempt to beautify Texas. The cobalt blue flowers pop up along freeways, carpet the hills and paddocks and pretty much flower wherever seeds are dropped. Their showing draws something like 50,000 people every year.
The bluebonnets are also known as the wolf flower, buffalo clover, and 'el coneja' (the rabbit) and was originally named for its striking similarity to the sunbonnets of pioneer women. There is a Comanche legend which has its own origins of the bluebonnets and describes the tribe's struggle against starvation, cold, and disease. It says that the Great Spirit told the chieftains that their most treasured and special possessions should be burned and scattered to the four winds as an offering. This was overheard by a little American Indian princess who decided to sacrificed her beautiful doll with a headdress from a blue jay. The following day, where the ashes had fallen, there was a beautiful carpet of blue flowers the same shade as the blue jay's feathers.
The other wildflower that is also seen on the trails is the Indian Paintbrush – also known as the Scarlet paintbrush. They vary in range of colour from orange, scarlet, cream and yellow and when mixed with the bluebonnets, the display is very pretty and colourful. They are a parasite type of flower which relies on the roots of other plants to help them grow and so can be hard to transplant.
The Indian Legend
The legend of the flower tells of a young Indian chief who delighted in the sunset colours and glows he often sat and watched, His dream was to be able to paint this beauty but all he had was a buckskin, stiff heavy brushes and crude war paints. After one night seeing one of the best sunsets he had ever seen, he heard a voice telling him to look down. By his feet he found a graceful plant shaped like a delicate brush wet with paint which matched the red of the sunset. He raised the tip to his soft buckskin and suddenly the colour transferred. Other brushes also sprang up dripping with the various colours of the sunset. He plucked each one and used them to create his picture. After he has finished his glorious picture, he looked down to where he had tossed all the used brushes and he saw they had all taken root and multiplied creating a striking carpet of beauty of the paintbrush.
This is a 3,570-acre impoundment on the Waxhachie Creek which is one of the largest attractions in Ellis county and offers much of the areas opportunity for water sport activities. There are boat launching ramps as well as camping and picnic areas surrounding the lake. At Highview Marina you can rent paddle boats.
%Location : 4 miles SW of Ennis on hwy 34.
Bluebonnet Park is 46,098 acres with many Lighted Baseball/ Softball Fields, Soccer Fields as well as play areas, picnic shelters, a fishing lake and walking and jogging paths.
Located : Off the 287 by-pass
(Congressman Joe Barton Parkway and U.S. 287 Bypass)
Little Mustang Creek Park
The Park leads down to the banks of Lake Bardwell. Its a nice drive or walk if you're feeling like it. There is a nice high view of the lake from the park as well as viewing a pretty array of bluebonnets and Indian paintbrush in the spring.
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