The budding blossoms of annual and perennial flowers around town have brightened up the summer in Invermere with a flurry of colours from the rainbow.
I think a lot of our success is determined by the weather, said Kassie Colonna, who helps maintain the flower beds with other District of Invermere staff for the summer. Weve had a really good season this year. Its been hot and its been raining a lot. And you can only fertilize after it rains because it doesnt burn the plants. And then well get a week of heat and then it rains then we fertilize in heat, and its really good for them.
The District of Invermere approved the $79,000 gardening program to revitalize the downtown core of the community, according to chief administrative officer Chris Prosser, who noted the Cenotaph project was not included in this budget.
The self-proclaimed flower girls consider their work experience a great way to spend the summer. Their green-thumbed responsibilities, which began in May and will wrap up when they return to school in the fall, are receiving rave reviews.
Theyre the same plants as last year. Theyre just fuller, theyve had a longer lasting season, explained Ms. Colonna. Weve also been able, because its been raining more, to maintain them more. Weve been weeding more and pruning more so they come back fuller.
Something that I really enjoy about this job is that we get a lot of gratitude for the stuff that we do, she said. We always have people stopping and thanking us in the street, or telling us that we do a good job, so its a really positive environment.
District gardener Olivia Rad returned to the community flower beds this summer after completing a two-month contract with the district last summer.
I didnt get to see everything grow, but this year, I got to see it from start to finish, said Ms. Rad. It was really enjoyable.
She finds the opportunity to work outdoors both informative and enjoyable. The duo have been making memories while getting their hands dirty.
There are a lot of perennials and annuals, said Ms. Rad, noting a wide variety of flowers with unique colour combinations were planted.
We have lots of petunias because petunias are heartier and they flower for a long time, added Ms. Colonna. Snaps are good, because theyre a little more maintenance, but they come back. They have three flowering sessions. Then, we really like the rutabagas and dinner plate dahlias and peonies. The peonies bloom earlier and theyre a statement flower.
But the sunflowers remain Ms. Colonnas favourite because theyre big and bright.
The cannas are the big ones in the middle, she added, noting theyre almost twice the size of last year. The pots (in front of Valley Foods) fill with water so when it gets hot, its like tropical conditions.