A purple coneflower blooms at the Victory Garden at the intersection of Victory Way and Finley Lane. The Craig Beautification Committee has been maintaining the spot for several years.

Photo by Andy Bockelman

A purple coneflower blooms at the Victory Garden at the intersection of Victory Way and Finley Lane. The Craig Beautification Committee has been maintaining the spot for several years.

Flower power stays strong amid Craig summer

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— For more information on how to get involved with the Craig Beautification Committee, call Julie Hanna at 824-5590.

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The Victory Garden at the intersection of Victory Way and Finley Lane.

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One of the many baskets of flowers kept up by the City of Craig hangs from a lamppost along Yampa Avenue.

— In spite of a summer climate that has been very inhospitable to plant life, members of the Craig community have managed to keep the town leafy and lovely.

As anyone who drives down local streets knows, the city of Craig’s efforts to keep the community looking nice to passers-by have been in full bloom, with baskets and planters of petunias along sidewalks and on corners impossible to miss.

Pam Maneotis, who oversees the care of the numerous flowers, said she has received nothing but positive feedback on the look.

“People really appreciate all the hard work the girls do going out to water and take care of them,” she said. “We’ll keep it up as long as the weather is nice because we want to have them out there as long as possible.”

Other groups, like the Northwest Colorado Chapter of Parrotheads and the Craig Beautification Committee, have joined the city in keeping the area looking good.

The Beautification Committee’s ongoing project, the Victory Garden at the intersection of Victory Way and Finley Lane, continues to flourish even after several years. It was last summer when caretakers Rose Counts, Sally Smith and Julie Hanna were able to install a walking path through the patch of land, a sidewalk surrounding it and a sprinkler system. This year, Hanna said, is “a maintenance year,” and maintenance never really stops.

“There’s at least six hours of work that goes into that place every week,” she said. “It takes a lot more than people think.”

Hanna said the soil contains about 30 or more different types of blossoms, grasses and other plant life, making for an eye-catching splash of color for locals or people just driving by on the highway.

“We’ve got rudbeckias, daisies, all sorts of perennials that come back each year, and this year we added some purple allium,” she said.

The spot recently was selected as Yard of the Week by the Craig Association of Realtors, an accolade Hanna said is rewarding as she, Counts and Smith continue the upkeep.

“Now that all the infrastructure is done, it’s the fun part where we can move things around or decide on different colors if we want,” she said. “It’s a gardener’s dream to be able to do that.”

The Beautification Committee, which also focuses on trying to cut down on street clutter like garage sale signs and other items abandoned on the curb, will continue to perform maintenance on the Victory Garden throughout September before going on hiatus until next spring when the process begins all over again.

Hanna said the group welcomes any assistance from its fellow green-thumbs when it works at the site Wednesday evenings. Additionally, ideas for similar projects around town are appreciated.

“We’re always on the lookout for that kind of thing,” she said.

Andy Bockelman can be reached at 970-875-1793 or abockelman@craigdailypress.com.

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