Growing a future for communities with local downtown plantings

Downtown plant­ings could help grow efforts for local revitalization ef­forts.

A recent Communities in Bloom committee meeting considered downtown plantings in  Clifford, Harriston, and Palmerston.

Business and Economic Manager Belinda Wick-Gra­ham discussed the results of the Harriston and Clifford revitalization meetings in regards to plantings. Those in Clifford favoured planting in the downtown from Bambina’s corner to the lights at Greenley’s restaurant.

Communities in Bloom administrator Louise Bexton planned to attend the next Clifford meeting to give suggestions on suitable plant material for that part of the town.

Bill Cheeseman felt that there were perhaps too many trees in that area and that it could do with fewer than suggested.

He also mentioned that Westario Hydro will not be replacing any of the hydro poles for another 13 years, so that they have to work around that as well.

Bexton noted she will be meeting with Ann Bowen, head of Clifford beautification this month to discuss downtown flowers. She asked if Cheese­man could join them, along with Georgie Hutchison,.

Harriston will be doing more hardscaping and painting in the downtown areas and possibly one or two raised beds.

The planters will be re­placed with in ground perennial and annual plantings at the bases of the existing street trees.

Bricks can be removed to accommodate the plants. Diane Kelly will inform the beautification committee about planting flowers and perennials in Minto colours.

She suggested the wood from the planters be recycled into something useful, such as birdhouses, and have a competition for the best birdhouse.

Later members said bat houses could be built and sold at the annual garden festival in June. Bats eat thousands of mosquitoes a night and should be promoted as a natural way to keep the mosquitoes population down.

Bexton said Palmerston will continue with the existing planters, as nothing is slated for the main street revitalization this year.