For the past five years, Greenhouse Grower Editor Delilah Onofrey and her family have adopted two flower beds on Hilliard Boulevard in Westlake, Ohio. The entire median, which runs a few miles, was planted up by volunteers on Saturday as part of Westlake In Bloom.
While the city has had this program for some time, it really got energized when Westlake participated in America In Bloom (AIB) in 2002 and 2005. The city is a past AIB winner and was also recognized in an international competition in Canada hosted by Communities In Bloom. Ever since 2002, Westlake’s blooming efforts have been a focal point in all of the city’s communications to residents.
The local Westlake In Bloom competition grows each year with residential and commercial entrants. All the Hilliard flower beds are automatically in the contest. About 300 people gathered at the Crocker Park lifestyle shopping center for the awards last summer. And Crocker Park itself is full of beautiful flowers. The local library also planted a beautiful courtyard reading garden inspired by the city’s efforts, and it hosts seminars encouraging residents to participate in the local contest. Westlake’s garden centers—Gale’s, Plantcrafters, Cahoon’s Nursery and Dean’s Greenhouse & Flower Shop—also support the program.
Pictured are the Onofrey boys: Tristan, Devlin and Arden. They planted two matching beds in shades of dark blue/purple, red and yellow. The scheme began with gaillardia ‘Arizona Sun’ and salvia in the middle for height. Next came red verbena and geraniums, ‘Easy Wave Blue’ petunias and Disco marigolds.