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2015 Dianthus - Flower of the Year
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Flower of the Year: Poppy

The Flower of the Year is selected by the Wood Buffalo Communities in Bloom Committee. Flowers are chosen because of their ease of growth, hardiness within our planting zone, or simply because of their beauty.

Residents are encouraged to enrich the landscape of our region with the Flower of the Year using seeds provided by Wood Buffalo Communities in Bloom. The seeds are packed with care by volunteers, and include instructions on plant growth and maintenance. Look for us at various community events to get your free packet of Flower of the Year seeds.

The 2017 Flower of the Year was selected for a specific reason. Marking the 150th anniversary of Canada's confederation, celebrations and ceremonies are planned across the country. We live in a country that has allowed us many freedoms and experiences, and an expression of that is in the poppy. While they can vary in colour, the vibrant red poppy is ingrained within Canadiana.

In 1915 during the First World War, a Canadian doctor, Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae wrote a poem titled “In Flanders Fields,” depicting fields of poppies during a time of war. The poem pays homage to those who sacrificed their lives for a future they would never experience themselves. As Canadians we recite 'In Flanders Field’ and proudly show respect for those who have served and sacrificed for our country by wearing a poppy during times of remembrance.

Wood Buffalo Communities in Bloom selected the poppy as our 2017 Flower of the Year to celebrate and remember all that makes us Canadian. Our hope is for the community to embrace this flower and remember all that it means to be Canadian as we see it pop up throughout our community this year.

Poppy Details and Care Instructions

Type: Annual,biannual, or perennial plant
Light: Full sun
Flower: Poppies can grow to over four feet tall, with flowers up to six inches across. They have between four to six petals, and bloom in various colours including red, yellow, white, orange, pink, and blue. Poppies tend to bloom from spring and early summer. Once blooming finishes, the petals will crumple into the bud before falling off.
  • Start seeds outside following the last frost
  • Select an area with full sun, and use light unfertilized soil
  • Scatter seeds at least six inches apart, and on top of loose soil
  • Lightly press seeds into soil, just barely covering the seeds
  • Water often, and always keep the soil slightly moist
  • Allow 20 to 30 days for germination
  • Care:
  • Water regularly, especially in dry, hot weather
  • Add nutrients to soil if required, with either compost of peat (do not use fertilizer)
  • Deadhead flowers regularly to encourage regrowth
  • Sow seeds in early fall and store for next season
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