Helena Beautification Board announces May residence award

By GRAHAM BROOKS / Staff Writer

HELENA–The Helena Beautification Board has announced the winning residence for the May Helena Beautification Award.

The award was given to Victoria Graham and Zulfi Merchant of 100 River Crest Circle South in Helena.

What began five years ago as a new home with just two sapling trees has now been transformed into a lush garden space full of both color and structure. This charming corner lot has become a focal point along the street with the array of stone borders brought in by Merchant himself. The borders form flower beds that are filled with colorful roses and other perennials. As one strolls through the garden, the eye is taken with the color of more than 60 roses.

“I was inspired by the city’s use of roses throughout Helena, and just had to add some to my own garden,” Graham said. “They are much easier to grow than I ever imagined.”

Arborvitaes line the back fence and create a striking backdrop alongside plantings of dogwoods, crepe myrtles and river birch trees. The arbors and trellises are lined with climbing roses, confederate jasmine and an inviting grape arbor. Along the shady side of the house is a collection of low growing Japanese Maples. Graham says they love to use containers and statues in the garden and as one walks through, they will see many planted with colorful annuals.

“This garden is definitely a labor of love,” Graham said.

The beautification award for June will be accepting nominations until the 25th with the winner being selected and notified at the first of the month.

The winner will be able to proudly display a yard sign for the month, have their picture and house published on the Helena Beautification website, Helena Beautiful Facebook page and in the Helena Reporter.

To nominate a home to receive the Helena Beautification Award on June 1, go to Helenabeautiful.com/award.html and submit the address.

The Helena Beautification Board is an appointed board of the Helena City Council. The board believes that people and places are profoundly connected and thriving communities are rooted in individual responsibility and action. They host a variety of opportunities for the community to come together and serve each year. Events are posted on the Helena Beautiful Facebook page and announced via Twitter at @TweetHomeHelena.

For more pictures and a full list of the plants planted at the home, visit Helenabeautiful.com/award.html.