Wolf Creek Trout Lily Preserve – Whigham, Georgia - Atlas Obscura

Wolf Creek Trout Lily Preserve

Whigham, Georgia

This protected reserve is home to a rare and beautiful species of flower. 


Located in rural Grady County, Georgia, between the towns of Cairo and Whigham, Wolf Creek Trout Lily Preserve is the location of the largest concentration of trout lilies in the world.

In the Southern United States, these flowers are usually only found concentrated in the area in and around the Appalachian Mountains. Though no one knows exactly how they ended up in South Georgia, a theory is that they migrated here tens of thousands of years ago during an ice age. While trout lilies can now be found in some areas in Southwest Georgia and North Florida, the area around Wolf Creek — which includes a hardwood forest with flecked sunlight in the winter, a north-facing slope, and a moist layer of soil over clay — was apparently a perfect environment for the spread of the lilies. This 140-acre preserve is home to millions of yellow and maroon dimpled trout lilies and thousands of maroon spotted trilliums.   

The area was designated as a conservation area in 2009, after years of efforts by volunteers, the (Tallahassee) Magnolia Chapter of the Florida Native Plant Society, Georgia Land Conservation Program, Georgia Native Plant Society, and the Georgia Botanical Society. 

During the bloom season, which is typically in February and/or early March, the area is open for visitors and guided tours.  Bringing a camera is highly recommended.

Know Before You Go

Check the Facebook page for information on best times to visit.  Wear boots or shoes with tread.  Bring a walking stick and a camera.  Leave your dog at home.

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