Aspen ready to color the town with flowers
Everything was coming up roses for Aspen City Council on Monday when it approved spending $30,000 on flowers for the summer.
Council approved a contract with a Longmont-based garden center to supply tens of thousands flowers that will be planted around town this spring.
For years, the city has contracted with Duran’s Hobby Acres to grow flowers from seed that meet the city’s specifications, said Matt Kuhn, Aspen’s parks and open space manager.
“They probably started growing them six or eight weeks ago,” he said.
This year’s cost for the flowers is $29,870, not including delivery fees. Kuhn estimates the city spends another $150,000 on staffing a seasonal crew that maintains the flower beds, as well as their equipment and vehicles.
In his memo to council, Kuhn said the parks department is dedicated to creating world-class displays for residents and tourists. And “while the department has shifted its focus to the use of perennials whenever possible, there are locations that perennials are not successful, or do not provide the continual color and bloom that our visitors and citizens expect to see. … A customizable contract is critical in allowing thoughtfully planned designs,” the memo reads.
The flowers are planted in fenced-in boxes on the pedestrian malls, as well as along Mill and Galena streets and Hyman and Cooper avenues, pocket parks, the Aspen Recreation Center and urns around town. In recent years, annual plantings have expanded to the John Denver Sanctuary, Rio Grande Park and City Hall gardens.
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