If you happen to find yourself in downtown Roseburg in the near future take a moment to look at the beautiful hanging flowers that seem to be everywhere. It may not seem like much, but a ton of work goes into hanging the more than 100 flower baskets and tending to them. Much of that work is done by Stacey Crowe and her dedicated crew of volunteers. Crowe does much of the work herself, watering and caring for the flowers each summer day from 6:30 a.m. to about 9 a.m.
“Stacey has been running the flower basket program from the very beginning,” said Susie Johnston-Forte, the executive director of the Downtown Roseburg Association. “She orders all the baskets, has them installed, and waters them every single day. It’s a huge, huge project and she has been single-handedly responsible for it.“
The News-Review spoke with Crowe about her flowers.
Question: How long have you been tending the flowers downtown?
Answer: Twenty years. I have been the one to water them every day for most of that time. It takes about two hours each day. They go up in May and down in September.
Q: Why do you do it?
A: It all started when Roseburg Town Center, now Downtown Roseburg Association, wanted to do flowers. Everyone loves the flowers. It brings smiles to folks and helps make downtown beautiful.
Q: How many are there and what kind of flowers are they?
A: It ranges from year to year. There are approximately 40 small baskets on some of the buildings and 65 large baskets on the lamp posts. There are a variety of flowers in the baskets. Petunias being the most popular flower baskets. I don’t plant them so it’s all a guess for me.
Q: Do you actually hang them too?
A: We used to, but my volunteers got old and have bad backs now. Actually, the City of Roseburg’s public works hangs the ones on the lampposts now and does the job in a quarter of the time it took us. I get a volunteer to help me hang the ones on the buildings.
Q: Who pays for all this?
A: The businesses make a donation to DRA for the small baskets and we get donations from several folks for the large baskets. My time is donated. The watering cart is ours and my husband keeps it running. We donate the fertilizer.
Q: Please tell us a little about yourself.
A: Well, I was featured in the paper a long time ago. I might be old news to some. My companion on the cart is Ollie and he is a welsh terrier. I believe he is the fourth dog to join me on the cart. I moved to Roseburg with my husband in 1993 and love the community. I served on the City Council from 2000 to 2008. Watering flowers is more fun!!