Florida's Floral Highways

By: Gary McKechnie


If you’re old enough, you may recall that back in the 1960s the First Lady, Lady Bird Johnson, helped implement a nationwide highway beautification project.

Part of that project included planting wildflowers along the roadside.

Did you know that Florida’s Department of Transportation’s doing the same thing today – and has been for the past 50 years?

Back in 1963 (even before Lady Bird was able to share her vision) a contractor bought some pasture grass that had been overseeded with clover, which resulted in a burst of red blooms along the roads. Motorists loved the sight and since then more wildflowers have been sown.

But it’s not just wildflowers. It’s plants and shrubs and bushes and landscaping that takes place across the state and lends an element of beauty to what is, at heart, a functional piece of concrete and asphalt.

The great thing is, you can participate. The DOT invites volunteers to help care for the roadside by ‘adopting’ a stretch of road and helping with litter removal at regular intervals.

To learn more and locate these colorful roads and how you can help the Florida Wildflower Program excel over the next 50 years, visit this DOT Site where you’ll find contact info and details and some wonderful images of wildflowers across Florida.

Making the world more beautiful is always a good thing. And maybe it’s something you’d like to do.

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