April 23, 2019

Where to See the Spring Flowers in Sparta

Posted by: Jennifer

Where to See the Spring Flowers in Sparta

Once the snow melts and the weather warms, flowers all across western Wisconsin poke their heads from the ground and start to bloom. Spring is the absolute best time to view Sparta’s flowers in all their colorful and eye-catching glory. From large state nature areas to small local parks, here are our top picks for viewing the spring flowers in Sparta.   

The Fort McCoy Barrens State Area is home to one of the least distrubed oak barrens remaining in Wisconsin. The area encompasses vast open prairies dotted with Black, Hill, and White Oak trees. Fort McCoy also boasts a diverse array of flower species, including little blue-stem, June grass, poverty oats grass, goat's-rue, bird's-foot violet, lance-leaved loosestrife, and wild lupine. You’ll also find uncommon varieties like the prairie fame-flower, the large-flowered penstemon, and the prairie larkspur.

Once spring hits, Spaulding Fen transforms into a beautiful paradise filled with the round-leaved sundew, blue-flat iris, bog rosemary, pitcher plant, rose pogonia, and grass pink, along with a variety of sedges and shrubs. Black River State Forest, Deer Island State Natural Area, and Great River Bluffs State Park are other great options for getting outside and exploring the beautiful spring blooms.

Spring is the perfect time to take a ride on the La Crosse River State Trail, a 22-mile cycling trail stretching from Sparta to La Crosse. On this smooth paved trail, you’ll pass lovely prairie remnants, farmland, trout streams, hardwood forests, and wetlands, with ample opportunities to stop and admire the blossoming rainbow of flowers along the way. For a longer ride, a bridge over Interstate 90 in Sparta connects the La Crosse River State Trail to the Elroy-Sparta State Trail on the east.

During the spring, the peaceful grounds of the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse bloom with countless beautiful flowers. This sacred pilgrimage site features a shrine church, chapels, rosary walk, and several devotional areas. Take a pleasant stroll through “Our Lady’s Garden” to admire the flowers in a relaxing and spiritual setting. You can pack a lunch to enjoy at their picnic tables or grab a bite at the Mariana Cafe on site. Other popular recreational parks within the Sparta-La Crosse area include Memorial Park, Evan-Bosshard Park, and Amundson Park, all located near the Franklin Victorian Bed & Breakfast.

Planning a trip to Sparta, Wisconsin? Book a stay at the lovely and historic Franklin Victorian Bed & Breakfast.


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