If you’ve noticed the beautification going on in Rehoboth, you can thank the 45 or so people who donate their time and their gardening moxy to help Rehoboth residents and visitors enjoy flowers – a true source of endorphins and visual happiness!
Meet Rehoboth in Bloom, an all-volunteer group of people dedicated to keeping our precious beach town joyfully colorful. They recently wrapped up a second year with great strides. More than 50 planters (many enormous) decorate the downtown streets in front of businesses, corners, and in Grove Park, where visitors to the farmers market go weekly.
Have you noticed the large planters brimming over with flowers. These oases filled with vibrant colors greet visitors (all weeded, pruned, and meticulously maintained by the group’s volunteers). Recently, the organization began using EarthPlanters, self-watering systems that take the strain out of manually watering every single planter, every day or in extreme heat.
It’s through community efforts like this that Rehoboth nurtures its innate charm. However, it’s not all easy street. They have experienced their own growing pains, such as pavers in the park being stolen, and disrespectful tourists sitting on (and killing) flowers in bloom.
But volunteerism is alive and well in Rehoboth Beach, evidenced by the spectacular colors that line the avenues and flower boxes of local businesses. The planters themselves are expensive; the group has relied on private and business donations to purchase them. They have also received a few grants to help pay for the planters and the plants.
With the cooperation of the city, Rehoboth in Bloom’s momentum is gaining speed. Their next project is to tackle the boardwalk area.
“We want to look like Lewes,” said Cindy Lovett, chairperson for the new initiative, and an active representative for the Rehoboth branch of the National Main Street Movement. Lewes, sister city and next door neighbor can teach Rehoboth a lot Lewes in Bloom was developed in 2002, and now boasts more than 200 members and volunteers who tend to 27 locations. This award-winning, enormous undertaking beautifies pedestrian and shopping areas within the town.
It’s not a competition, however! The meaningful and therapeutic love of plants and flowers is something that, like a vine, is shared.
So, take a look. Better yet, take a deep breath as you enjoy the plethora of blossoming beauties by Rehoboth in Bloom.