Hazel Miller Plaza was a hub of activity Thursday morning as Edmonds Floretum Garden Club members, trowels in hand, descended on the planting beds, getting them ready for summer by installing more than 750 new plants.
Once again, Petula Plants Nursery of Port Townsend donated the plant material, including several exotic species native to warmer climes.
“Hazel Miller Plaza is a very special micro-environment,” explained Edmonds Horticulturalist Debra Dill. “The southwest exposure combined with the building configuration concentrates sunlight and holds in heat. This means that the Plaza is consistently several degrees warmer than its surroundings, and plants that will grow nowhere else in Edmonds can thrive here. This year we’re including some drought-tolerant plants that don’t generally do well this far north. I’m particularly thrilled that this includes Tibouchina, a beautiful Brazilian native with lush foliage and stunning purple flowers.”
For the Floretum volunteers, it’s just one more way to pitch in and give back to the community. “This year alone the club has helped plant five major areas in downtown,” said Dill. “They’ve saved the city scores of labor hours while helping to ensure a beautiful downtown this summer.”
Hazel Miller Plaza is the last big Floretum volunteer planting project this season, allowing the club to close out its reign as 2015 Edmonds Citizen of the Year on a high note. The crown officially passed the torch to the 2016 recipient, the Edmonds Petanque Club, on Thursday afternoon.
— Story and photos by Larry Vogel