Cherry blossoms aren’t the only spring flowers worthy of attention in the Washington area. The delicate, bright-blue Virginia bluebells are another welcoming sign of springtime.
Virginia bluebells are expected to blossom this week, including at Bull Run Regional Park in Centreville, which has a Bluebell Trail. Peak bloom is estimated for April 8 to 12, says Matt Felperin, the NOVA Parks roving naturalist.
Although the bluebell’s blooming season is typically from mid-April to May, Felperin says the sea of bluebells may taper off after a week or so. “I don’t want anyone to show up disappointed that most of the plants are past [their] peak,” he says.
Felperin says the best times to avoid a crowd and to capture bluebells at their most beautiful are early mornings and late afternoons, as the midday sun can wash out the deep-blue pigment. He also cautions visitors to wear clothing and shoes they don’t mind getting muddy.
While visitors can admire the bluebells and other seasonal plants, like the Virginia springbeauty, on their own, the park is hosting events during the blooming season. Felperin will lead nature walks and photography workshops throughout April. The “Beauty of Bluebell Walk” will take visitors on an educational, guided nature stroll through the Bluebell Trail, a 1.5-mile loop, which is surrounded by not only bluebells but wildlife such as frogs. At photography workshops, Felperin helps nature and photo enthusiasts capture the perfect shot. Registration and information for these events can be found here.