Peak wildflower bloom in Miami Valley


MIAMI VALLEY, Ohio (WDTN) – Wildflower views are peaking across the Miami Valley.

Education Coordinator Betty Hoevel said cooler weather will help the peak last longer across Five River MetroParks.

“You’ll be able to see a lot of color now through the next two weeks,” Hoevel said. “If it doesn’t get hot. They don’t like the hot.”

She also said heavy rainfall will not have an impact.

“They don’t mind that. They don’t mind it cold. They come back. So, they’re good,” Hovel said.

Wildflowers have been popping up since late March.

“What happens earlier in the year, the first things that start to bloom are the yellow winter aconites,” Hoevel said. “They’re that yellow carpet that you see everywhere in march and you go, oh it’s going to be spring.”

She said there’s typically about four waves of flowers.  

“You won’t see the early blooming plants. They’re done now,” Hoevel said.

“It’s just a wow moment every time I go out because each wildflower has a different life cycle,” Katy Lucas said.

Lucas is the Environmental Education Supervisor with Centerville-Washington Park District. 

“Right now when you go out there is a splash of color in most of our woodland areas within the parks,” Lucas said. “I’ve seen larkspur blooming and that’s just the prettiest purple you’ve ever seen. I love that one.”

Through an app called iNaturalist, Centerville-Washington Park District hosted a BioBlitz the week of Earth Day.

“A BioBlitz is just when you take pictures and you record everything you possibly can in the area,” Lucas said.

The top recorded species were mayapple, bloodroot, toadshade trillium, blue phlox, and large white trillium. Lucas also said there were a lot of violets.

“It’s just so exciting because it’s like you are welcoming back this old friend. You know they come back every year, and so you get to see them for this really really short time while they’re blooming, Lucas said. “They get pollinated, they produce seeds and then they’re gone for the next year.”

Lucas said flowers are blooming across their parks.

“Grant Park is a really nice one to get out to for wildflowers. Bill Yeck is another great one,” Lucas said.

Both Lucas and Hoevel remind people to keep practicing social distance at the parks.

“We can’t just chit chat in the woods like we used to, but that will come back. It will,” Hoevel said.

Hoevel suggested walking on the trails at the MetroParks.

“A lot of people say well I go to Wegerzyn all the time, but you may not go on the trails to look at the wildflowers,” Hoevel said. “So, that’s another thing besides the gardens.”

Hoevel said flowers blooming at MetroParks right now include cutleaf toothwort, round lobed hepatica, twinflower, Virginia bluebell, violets, white violets, yellow trout lily, Jacob’s ladder, shooting star, wild blue phlox, wild geranium, Dutchman’s breeches, bellwort, maroon trillium, white trillium, golden ragwort.

“I would definitely encourage people that if they find one they like, or that really appeals to them, to look it up,” Lucas said. Not only are they pretty, but each individual species  has it’s own fascinating lifecycle and life history, and how it attracts pollinators and how it goes to seed.”


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