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Jawbone Park (Photo by Brian Bergstrom / My Buckhannon)

City horticulturist planting seeds for a robust 2023 flower season from her new greenhouse

BUCKHANNON – As the temperatures rise in Buckhannon, so does the abundance of beautiful flowers.

Dixie Green, City of Buckhannon horticulturist, said she has been planning Buckhannon’s upcoming flower season from her newly constructed greenhouse on Mud Lick Road near the city Street Department.

“This greenhouse is a lot bigger, it is bigger by 40 feet in length, and I think by six feet in width, so I have a lot more space and room to fit in everything, and I can expand if we need to; it’s really, really nice,” Green said. “It is incredibly convenient, and it’s close to town, so I don’t have to haul flower baskets all the way up from the high school.”

The new greenhouse has allowed her to grow more flowers this year and prepare more flower baskets.

“I’ll be attempting to grow a second round of baskets – not a full second round of baskets, but a lot more replacements – so that we have the best-looking baskets that we can all summer long and replace what we need,” Green said.

She has also started to plan which flowers will be displayed during the various events in Buckhannon this summer, including the 2023 World Association of Marching Showbands Championships July 17-24. Green has been coordinating the blooms with each event’s theme and color scheme.

“It is difficult because there’s not a lot of blue and orange flowers; there’s actually no blue flowers, there’s just really light purple flowers and the theme of WAMSB, the marching band competition that’s coming in town, is blue and orange,” Green said. “I’m going to try to incorporate as many blues and orange hues as I can, which means a lot of cannas (lilies), a lot of the bright flowers that are on Main Street — the impatiens. People seem to really like those. I’m going to try to pull the whole thing together because they’ll have signage and everything with that color scheme.”

Green said theming the flowers for the West Virginia Strawberry Festival is much easier with pink and red colors. The rest of the summer will feature a variety of bright-colored flowers, including petunias and canna lilies.

“A lot of people really liked the sweet potato vines last year, so I’ll be doing those again this year and we’ll be donating the sweet potatoes to the Parish House, just like we did last year,” Green said. “We’re also doing a project with Jeanne Bennett, some members of Delta Kappa Gamma and the Fred Brooks Garden Club. It’s the ‘Growing Marigolds and Children’ project, so basically, second-graders from throughout Upshur County will be planting marigolds, and they’ll be taken to Buckhannon, and we’re all going to help plant them around town. They get the hands-on learning experience, and they help with the flower program.”

Green also hopes to work on the tree replacement project for Jawbone Park.

“There are some sick maples there, so we’ll be replacing them later this spring once it warms up, and we’ll be continuing on with our landscape improvement project that we started last year,” Green said. “There were a few beds that we completely redid because that needed to be redone – they get old, the plants get too big, there’s just covered in weeds – so we’re going through systematically and redoing all the beds around town and give them a facelift.”

In the long term, Green hopes to plant strawberry plants in honor of the festival.

“I just started a rather large batch of strawberry plants, and I’d like to plant more strawberry plants throughout the beds around town because they will be blooming around Strawberry Festival,” Green said. “That won’t be this year because it does take one to two years, but that’s my little experimental project.”

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