Katie and I were chirping like two little birdies around the dinner table the other day about my bluebonnet adventure. Some of the prettiest and most expansive fields of wildflowers I visited last week were just this side of Hempstead and all through Chappell Hill, Brenham, Burton and the little town of Independence. They were so lovely it made my heart skip a beat more than once. Oh, and did I mention the ant bites I’d sustained while sitting in one particularly lovely patch? Obviously, I didn’t have a Blue’s clue what could be livin’ and breathin’ amongst those wildflower beauties. Let’s just say they musta been a mutant breed with extremely sharp chompers. “Do you remember that year we lived up in Michigan?” asked Katie. “I planted a whole package of bluebonnet seeds we brought with us.” It was the late ‘80s and I couldn’t for the life of me recall that memory. Katie musta been in the first or second grade at the time. Apparently, we tried to bring a teensy bit of Texas with us. “They didn’t even sprout,” said Katie, our native Texan, all dejected. But that was light years ago. Fast-forward to today. The Frantz family presently has a rather lame micro-sized bluebonnet patch in the backyard. I suspect it sprouted from whatever was in the ground last year because it didn’t get any help from us. It is certainly not a patch of any consequence that you’d want to sit a cute little kid in … or for that matter … even pose yourself to post later on your facebook page. Now if you have the time, the drive toward Austin along US 290 is a wildflower extravaganza right this very moment. This year I drove down some of the back roads of Brenham along FM 390 in search of that perfect patch of wildflowers and hit pay dirt. I recall one particular white-railed fence with a field of ever so gently rolling acres of thick bluebonnets. So blue when I squinted my eyes, it looked like a lake. Of course my thought was it would be an even lovelier picture if that horse that stood half a mile away would just trot up closer to where I was standing and pose. I tried whistling, but heck, I never have been able to get much of a sound out when I pucker up my lips real tight and blow. My family always falls on the floor laughing when I try to whistle along to The Andy Griffith Show theme song. Since the whistling wasn’t yielding any results, I yelled, “Come over here, horsey,” a couple of times. Didn’t even get a swish from his tail. Yep, and I’m still kickin’ myself because I didn’t stop on the road where these two cows were hangin’ out by the barbed wire fence. The pair of bovines stood knee deep in a perfect patch of bluebonnets right near the road. That woulda been a great shot, except the road’s shoulder was a little too narrow, we were going too fast, and the traffic on that winding road was a tad too close to the old bumper. Obviously, a couple of cowpokes in a bit of a hurry. But I did get a great photo later of the springhouse in the little town of Independence. It wasn’t 30 minutes earlier that the pastor of the Independence Baptist Church gave us a tour of the church with its unusual stained glass windows imported all the way from Belgium. Sam Houston was baptized there in 1854. If you get the chance to visit, run your fingers over Mr. Houston’s initials in one of the front pews. Now that’s history. Not too far down the road from the church is all that remains of the Sam Houston home site … a springhouse … with tons of bluebonnets scattered all about. It is my favorite photo of the trip. Now you might be wondering … what the heck is a springhouse? If I hadn’t grabbed a brochure from the church I wouldn’t have had a clue. It looked strangely like an abode for a couple of preschoolers. This teeny little house, with a door opening, had walls of white stone and it seems its sole purpose was to identify a water source, a spring. So if you are planning a bluebonnet quest, better get out there quick. I’m told the best crop hangs around till mid-April. But be careful when you sit yourself, or that cute toddler, amongst the wildflowers. Remember … you are in Texas … where the bluebonnets are lovely to look at … and the critters that may live among them might be hungry for flesh. Dixie Frantz is a long-time Kingwood resident and newspaper columnist since 1996. E-mail Dixie with your comments at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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