Cache Creek green thumbs getting ready to fill village planters

All 30 of Cache Creek’s planters have been adopted, and will soon be ready for planting. (Photo credit: Journal files)All 30 of Cache Creek’s planters have been adopted, and will soon be ready for planting. (Photo credit: Journal files)
Every Cache Creek planter will feature a sign showing who has adopted it, as well as sunflowers, which are this year’s theme. (Photo credit: Village of Cache Creek)Every Cache Creek planter will feature a sign showing who has adopted it, as well as sunflowers, which are this year’s theme. (Photo credit: Village of Cache Creek)

It’s full steam ahead for Cache Creek’s new Adopt-a-Planter program, with all 30 planters spoken for. Chief Administrative Officer Damian Couture says that everything is on track for planting to be able to start on the May long weekend, as public works crews get the soil and irrigation systems ready to go.

“Ten of the planters don’t have the ability to be watered, and we have special arrangements with the people who adopted them,” he explains. Seven of them are located in front of the Cache Creek market site and have been adopted by one organization; the other three are in front of the visitor centre and have been adopted by another group. The remaining 20 have been adopted by individuals, groups, or businesses in the community.

“Some people have already started planting in their spaces, and we’ve said that’s fine, but our commitment as a village is to have soil in them and have the irrigation working by the May long weekend,” adds Couture. “Some of the planters are already done, but it’s an ongoing process.”

Coroplast signs on stakes have been ordered, and they will identify who is looking after each planter.

“We originally looked at getting permanent metal signs so people could have a year over year presence, but instead we elected for full-colour coroplast signs, which will be a decent size so people can see them from a distance.” By having new signs each year, they can incorporate whatever theme is chosen annually. This year, each planter must contain at least one sunflower — Cache Creek’s official flower — so the signs will have sunflowers on them, in addition to information about who has adopted the planter.

When each planter has been completed, the sponsors can come to the village office to show that it has been done and collect their sign. They will also get a form for reimbursement of up to $100 from one of the three local businesses — Horsting’s Farm Market, Desert Hills Ranch, and Ashcroft Home Hardware — that sells plants.

“We wanted to make the program accessible to everyone,” Couture explains, noting that the planters are quite large. “Planting can be inexpensive if you’re doing it in a small format, but we wanted to make sure people who were already donating their time didn’t have to pay out of pocket.

“People can go over that amount if they want to, but it’s meant so that people who might want to participate but maybe couldn’t financially could still take part. We wanted to be inclusive.”

Apart from including at least one sunflower, participants have free rein when it comes to what they decide to plant. However, Couture adds that the village is looking for different themes and ideas for prize categories.

“There’s likely going to be a ‘best overall’ category and a ‘best use of theme’, but the other categories are up in the air, and we’re open to suggestions. We hope to have a final list in place for the May long weekend so people can maybe plan around one category.”

The plan is to have “celebrity” judges come in and judge the planters in August or early September, with prizes for the winners. There will also be a wrap-up event for participants at the end of the season.

“People who are signing up are very excited about it,” says Couture. “Some have expressed friendly discontent that they can’t plant sooner, but we don’t want the irrigation starting too soon, because we’d hate to see damage to the water system. Since this is the first year we really want to make sure it goes off correctly, and we’ll know for next year.

“We’re excited about it. I’m not a gardening person, but I’m excited about it. We have 30 planters with 22 different participants and visions, and it’s nice to see that kind of adoption. I wasn’t sure if we’d fill all the planters, but if this year’s program goes well we can maybe expand it to more of the greenspace in town next year.”



editorial@accjournal.ca

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