“This only happens once every 10 years or so…everything is in bloom all at once here!” our Dallas Arboretum contact eagerly tells us as we enter Dallas Blooms. My boys make a beeline for the Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden, while I gaze longingly at the Japanese (Koshini) cherry trees’ blossoms waving in the breeze along the path.
Dallas Blooms, a six-week festival with 500,000 tulips (and 100 swoon-worthy varieties of spring bulbs), live music, kids’ activities, wine & beer pairings, tastings, cooking classes, and a ton more through April 11 this year, feels like a necessary rite of passage in 2021 as we start to (hopefully?) emerge from the pandemic.
This year’s theme is “America The Beautiful” which seems fitting as we start to head outdoors to celebrate Spring. It’s SO therapeutic to feel the warm breezes, hear the fountains and the wind move through the trees, touch the velvety petals, smell the intoxicating blossoms, and snack on frozen treats as we leisurely meander through a world of color, right in the middle of our bustling metroplex.
The four themed weeks during Dallas Blooms focus on different parts of the U.S.: March 17, the day we visited, had a focus on the Midwest, while March 20 begins Mid-Atlantic Week, March 27 switches the focus to the South, and Easter Weekend at the Dallas Arboretum is celebrated starting April 2.
Science + Nature + Fun :: Rory Meyers Children’s Garden
My kids weren’t terribly thrilled about visiting a garden over their spring break, but I promised them that the children’s garden was actually cool, where they could literally put together all the components of a flower, explore an “incredible edible” garden, see how wind, sunshine and water produce energy (the shooting water pistols are a perennial fave), and Earth cycles, where they spent a ton of time playing with all the rocks and minerals.
I was pleasantly surprised at the time they spent exploring each gallery; they were actually LEARNING while interacting with each area. My oldest loved using the garden map to lead us to each area. The garden path weaves and winds amongst Texas native plants and was adequately shaded, with benches every few feet. I’m definitely making this a spring break tradition.
Tips for Creating Your Own “Dallas Blooms” At Home
Every time I visit the Arboretum, I leave craving an outdoor oasis in my own backyard, but I find that a lot of the Southern gardening websites or books focus on the Mid-Atlantic South, NOT Texas. I was excited to find many valuable resources right on the Arboretum’s website for North Texas gardens. There are videos, garden tours, and even a section on Gardening by Month from their seasoned horticulture staff.
Here are a few quick tips* for your Dallas garden in March:
- Cool-season annuals provide instant color after our surprise February snow.
- Warm season veggies, like tomatoes, can be planted late this month.
- Time to plant new trees and shrubs, before the hot summer season, so that they can establish a good root system.
*All tips found on the Dallas Arboretum website.
“The cherry blossomS are so pretty; they won’t last much longer!”
I overhear one of the Arboretum garden specialists say to another while on one of the garden paths overlooking the Nancy Rutchik Red Maple Rill. I smile at my boys as we wind our way through the main gardens; what a privilege to have such a celebrated and awarded garden here. Dallas Blooms is my favorite time of year, and I encourage you to bring your kids for a visit this Spring. It’s the perfect antidote to everything we’ve experienced over the past year.