Spring in Austin TX Red Bud Begins Blooming

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Spring in Austin, Texas starts early compared to my hometown of Calgary Alberta Canada. When I see the red bud trees blooming I consider it the first sign of spring in Austin. Noticing a few red bud trees blooming in Austin in late February I decided on a visit to Zilker Botanical Gardens to see the red bud trees up close.

Although just starting to bloom, the red bud trees are easy to identify with clusters of bright pink capsules on otherwise bare branches. When the red buds get into full bloom you will see large clusters of the pink flowers among the branches.

Red buds are one of a few trees that blooms before leafing out in springtime. Another southern beauty that blooms before foliage appears is the magnolia tree.


Austin, TX - Zilker Botanical Gardens - red bud blooming

Austin Texas Red Bud tree starting to bloom at Zilker Botanical Gardens


In Austin one day in late February it’s 82 F (28 degrees Celsius) and in the evening it’s down to below freezing temperatures once again. Spring in Austin is sometimes quashed by ice storms.

Pecan trees signal spring

Pecan trees are the true sign of spring in Austin, that’s what long time locals tell me. The pecan trees are the last of the trees to leaf out in spring. They are not fooled by warm weather in February.

Spring also brings the wildflowers blooming along the roadsides and in gardens around Austin and central Texas. One of my favorite places to see the wildflowers is at Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center in South Austin. The bluebonnets are beautiful flowers and such a rare color to see in the plant world.

Mid-March is usually a safe bet for travel to Austin for warm spring weather. Austin temperatures in February often fluctuate greatly from freezing temperatures to hot sunny days.

I know I’m a cold weather wimp nowadays. Even though I grew up in Calgary I’ve become acclimated to the Texas heat now. I’m always ready for springtime.


Spring in Austin TX means bright pink redbud flowers blooming


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About the Author

Susan Moore spent 7 months traveling solo around Southeast Asia back in the 90's. Returning to Canada she found a job working on rotation in Siberia Russia. She later moved to Austin Texas where she started a bookkeeping business, allowing her to work remotely. Currently Susan is in year 5 of a solo road trip around the USA and Canada, living a nomadic life, and writing about her experiences with a focus on hiking and cultural encounters. Read all about Susan » You can reach Susan Moore at Facebook or Twitter or Instagram

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  1. I’m coming to you from Ever in Transit’s link to this post. My hometown is Austin, so I am missing these beautiful flowers and the “spring” weather right now, when you’re actually getting it. Living on the tropical island of Penang, Malaysia for the last few years, I have truly become a cold weather wimp. It’s 85F year-round here. I am actually wondering if I can endure the Austin winter when we return.

    • Hi Michele!

      The wildflowers burst into bloom this week – I’m going to make a trip up to Burnet and Lake Buchanan to see the bluebonnets this weekend. Penang must be gorgeous – hope you are enjoying it! I visited Malaysia many years ago but I didn’t make it to Penang – only Malacca, KL, and Pulau Parhentian – which was beautiful!

      Yes you will freeze during winter in Austin :) but then you will have the rewards of spring!

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