MERIDEN — Spring is in full bloom downtown thanks to a family-owned nursery in Cheshire and a small army of volunteers who planted 200 flower pots in the area of Colony and West Main streets this week.
A pickup truck from Casertano Greenhouses & Farms carrying flowers and dirt arrived downtown Monday morning and volunteers from the Downtown Beautification Committee immediately got to work filling flower boxes.
“They were very excited to help out,” David Cooley said about Casertano. Cooley is a business recruitment specialist with the Making Meriden Business Center.
The volunteers came from the local Neighborhood Association, and businesses. Volunteer and former Mayor Michael Rohde reached out to the Cheshire nursery, employees at Trifecta Ecosystems Inc. helped clean and paint the boxes, and Bruce Burchsted of Prentis Printing Solutions Inc. repaired some of the broken boxes.
Students from the Venture Academy, members of the Meriden Senior Center and gardeners from the Neighborhood Association pitched in to load wheelbarrows or to plant. Casertano will return in late May with summer flowers and again in early September with fall blooms.
“It was a great grassroots partnership of Making Meriden Business Center and the Neighborhood Association,” Cooley said.
The idea came from a workshop Cooley attended with economic development leaders from other cities. He asked “What have you found to have the most impact with the least amount of money?”
“They all said flowers,” Cooley said.