Exquisite floral displays have painted Amherst in a blaze of dazzling colours this summer.
“We’ve received a lot of compliments from our citizens and visitors this summer on how attractive and appealing our flowerbeds, hanging baskets and planters are,” Mayor David Kogon said. “I’d have to agree. Our flowers have never looked better.
“Our downtown looks beautiful, as do all of our parks. That can only be attributed to the excellent work being done by our town staff and summer students who faithfully and lovingly look after these plants. They have done a marvellous job.”
Many residents have also commented on how well the flowers in the town’s hanging baskets and planters did during the recent heat wave. They noticed how the blooms didn’t dry up like many plants did during the dry spell.
While that too can be attributed to the hard work of town employees, it also has links to a decision made by the town council in the past couple of years to purchase “self-watering” flower baskets and planters, the mayor said.
Unseen to the naked eye, these new, more environmentally friendly baskets and planters have reservoirs that hold water and fertilizer until it is needed by the plant.
“The reservoirs have enabled us to cut down on the amount of water used by each planter and hanging basket when compared to the ones they replaced,” Kogon explained. “They also enabled us to reduce the amount of fertilizer we require because the water and the fertilizer is contained in the reservoir instead of running off onto the ground as they did with the old planters.”
In the past, the flowers in the planters had to be watered daily. Now, it’s about three days between each watering, which means the town uses less fuel driving around to water the plants, the mayor added.
“The Amherst town council is committed to becoming a greener community,” Kogon said. “These new self-watering hanging baskets and planters, along with the recent decisions to purchase an electronically powered Zamboni, install solar panels on the stadium roof and an electric vehicle charging station, show we are working towards making Amherst an environmentally friendly town.”