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Spring Wildflowers in the Shenandoah Valley

Virginia Gold Orchard Wildflowers

The trees might still be bare, but delicate and early-blooming wildflowers foreshadow the warm weather on the way. Often overlooked in other seasons, wildflowers are the unsung heroes of spring, and the Shenandoah Valley boasts over 850 species. Here are some of our favorite spots to see and pick them. Grab your camera and your wildflower identification book and hit the trails!

Find Them in Nature

The Shenandoah Valley wildflower season stretches from early spring to late fall. Visit these parks to view and photograph the ever-changing displays.

Edith J. Carrier Arboretum / 780 University Blvd, Harrisonburg

James Madison University’s Edith J. Carrier Arboretum is a tree and wildflower preserve dedicated to research, education, and preserving Virginia’s native species. Three miles of peaceful paths wind through open and wooded ecosystems just minutes from downtown Harrisonburg’s outdoor dining options. The arboretum’s spring floral showstoppers include bluebells, bloodroot, trout lily, spring beauty, wild larkspur, true geranium, and trillium. Spread your picnic blanket near the lake or watch your kids play at the At Home in the Woods Family Garden. This charming space has natural and imaginative play elements, including a six-foot-tall troll! Check the events calendar for arboretum programs and workshops, and see what’s in bloom each month. 

Spring Wildflowers In The Shenandoah Valley

Shenandoah River State Park / 350 Daughter of Stars Drive, Bentonville

1,600-acre Shenandoah River State Park sits on 5.2 miles of the South Fork of the Shenandoah River. The park has 25 miles of hiking and biking trails with views of the forest, the river, and both Massanutten Mountain and Shenandoah National Park. This year’s annual Bluebell Festival on April 13 will feature live music, food trucks, craft vendors, guided nature walks, and ranger programs. Stay for the weekend in one of the park’s cabins or the campground, which offers a dozen tent campsites overlooking the water. Canoers or kayakers can access the river from the park or book excursions with Downriver Canoe Company. The park is located a short distance from Front Royal’s lodging, shopping, and dining scene, as well as The Apple House and its famous apple butter cinnamon donuts!

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Blandy Experimental Farm / 400 Blandy Farm Lane, Boyce

700-acre Blandy Experimental Farm (Boyce) is a University of Virginia research facility and home to Virginia’s state arboretum. Guided and self-guided tours teach about themed gardens and native plants blooming on the property. You’ll see wildflowers, shrubs, and trees in their springtime glory, along with herbs, boxwoods, and a zoo garden. Walking trails traverse woodland, meadow, and wetland habitats that support various living creatures. Keep active kids engaged by encouraging them to find 10 geocaches hidden on the property. They can also use your phone to Dial-a-Tree and learn ecological and historical information about important trees. Inspired? Take a garden home with you by making a terrarium at Berryville’s Modern Mercantile. Later, grab a laid-back southern meal at Suecat’s Bistro or a traditional tea service at The Tea Cart.

Spring Wildflowers In The Shenandoah Valley

Seven Bends State Park / 2111 S. Hollingsworth Rd, Woodstock

Seven Bends State Park hugs the curves of the North Fork of the Shenandoah River and provides eight miles of well-maintained trails of varying difficulty for stunning views of the river and mountains. An incredible display of bluebells grows along the river path. Many other types of flowers can be found in the park, such as Dame’s rocket, bee balm, Queen Anne’s lace, mountain laurel, trillium, and asters. The kids will love the playground, swinging bridge, and children’s sensory garden. Don’t forget to take selfies with the LOVE sign. After your time in the park, head to Woodstock for a meal or a wine tasting at neighboring Muse Vineyards

Spring Wildflowers In The Shenandoah Valley

Other Places to See Flowers:

Bring Them Home

Please leave the wildflowers in our parks for others to enjoy. If you’d like to bring blooms home with you, try these destinations.

Virginia Gold Orchard / 100 Asian Pear Way, Natural Bridge

Virginia Gold Orchard is an Asian pear farm that now boasts a U-pick wildflower patch that’s open from May to November. Fill a wide-mouth mason jar with a big variety of your favorite blooms for just $15. The orchard also sells flower and pear CSA subscriptions. Bring a picnic and spread out at the pavilion or enjoy a tasting at the onsite Ramulose Vineyards tasting room. Hungry? Layne’s Country Store is a popular stop for nostalgic finds and quick snacks and beverages, and the entire family will love a tasty meal at the retro-cool Pink Cadillac Diner.

Brown Dog Blooms / 324 Middlebrook Rd, Staunton

Enjoy fresh floral delights all season long from family-owned Brown Dog Blooms. Committed to sustainable agriculture and organic growing practices, the farm grows over 50 varieties of flowers like dahlias, ranunculus, and zinnias to sell locally at their farm stand and through bouquet subscriptions. The farm is convenient to downtown Staunton and eateries like Crucible Coffee and the new Latin Soul.

Spring Wildflowers In The Shenandoah Valley

Harmony Harvest Farm / 201 Little Run Rd, Weyers Cave

Family-owned and operated Harmony Harvest Farm grows 400 types of flowers to bring their customers a wide variety of fresh blooms all season long. Choose from fresh-cut flowers, mixed bouquets, or flowers from the pick-your-own Victory Garden. There’s lots to do at the farm, including events like bouquet-making and floral design workshops, garden tours, and shopping at the farm market. Enjoy your fresh flowers with a locally made snack, cup of coffee, or glass of wine from nearby Valley Pike Farm Market.

Spring Wildflowers In The Shenandoah Valley

Other places to buy spring flowers:

What are you waiting for? Get out there and enjoy spring’s wildflower display with its ever-changing palate of color!

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