Helena Magazine

Helena holds Spring Planting Day

Published 11:23 am Tuesday, April 25, 2023

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By LIZZIE BOWEN | Staff Writer

HELENA – Helena beautified the city with plants during its annual Spring Plating Day.

“It was a great day,” Councilmember Chris VanCleave said. “Our board was there, and we had volunteers from the community come out to help with this annual event. We planted the hanging baskets that hang throughout the city every year.”

This year was the 12th time that the event has been held. VanCleave said prior to volunteers coming out to beautify the city, it was done by one singular person.

“When I formed the beautification board about twelve years ago, we started doing it as a community event,” VanCleave said. “Not only as a way to get the work done, but as a way also to bring people together.”

VanCleave said turnout for this event is typically good, and the city tends to see anywhere from 25-65 people.

“We are what I call a ‘whosoever will’ group,” VanCleave said. “Whoever shows up for however longer they can stay at any beautification event, they are welcome. If they can only give an hour of their time, if they can only give 30 minutes, we encourage people to come out.”

In addition to planting all of the hanging plants around the city, volunteers and the beautification board also planted all of the containers sitting on the porches of city hall, all of the containers around the clock tower and the containers at the Caboose Welcome Center.

“The Beautification Board is an appointed board of the city, and this is one of our largest annual events,” VanCleave said. “We use it as a teaching tool. We have two generations now of people who don’t garden, and it is an opportunity for us to teach the community how to plant a container garden.”

VanCleave said events like this are not only teaching the community about plants and the importance of gardening, but also teaching to show love and appreciation towards the natural beauty plants and gardening bring.

“For me, the importance of gardening is that it is therapeutic,” VanCleave said. “It is an opportunity to break away from the computer screen or the chaos of the rest of the world and either grow your own food or plants and flowers that help enhance the beauty around you. That’s one of the reasons we do the hanging baskets and planted the flowers around town, to help enhance that quality of life we have.”