About the Program

Our Invitation to BC Communities    
Invitation to BC Communities ...    
Program History ...    
Program Benefits ...    
Evaluation Process & Criteria ...    
Results ...    
 
What is Communities in Bloom :
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People, Plants & Pride ... growing together.
An Invitation

Communities that look successful are most likely to be successful. Whether a community's specific goals are to increase tourism, generate new economic development or simply to build civic pride, the appearance presented to citizens and to others is a key factor in achieving those goals. British Columbia Communities in Bloom is a program that inspires communities to enhance and sustain the visual appeal of neighbourhoods, public spaces, parks and streetscapes through the imaginative use of regionally-appropriate plants and landscaping with attention to environmental stewardship and to preserve heritage and cultural assets. An integral component of this very popular program is the friendly competition between communities, engaging citizens of all ages, service groups, businesses and associations in a public-spirited effort to succeed and be recognized. We invite communities of all sizes and from every region of British Columbia to participate in the BC Communities in Bloom program to reap the many social and economic benefits that result


History

National beautification initiatives have flourished in Europe for decades and it was from those successful programs that Communities in Bloom took its inspiration. Beginning in Canada in 1995 with 29 Canadian communities, the national Communities in Bloom program has grown to encompass hundreds of jurisdictions across the country with most provinces hosting regional editions. Since 1997 BC has hosted its own Provincial edition and in 2005, structured as a registered not-for-profit society British Columbia Communities in Bloom (with the help from the BC Landscape & Nursery Association) to administrate the program within this province.


Benefits


People and businesses want to be associated with an attractive looking community, which is particularly important with respect to potential residents, investors, visitors, developers, realtors and others. It is also true that citizens want real environmental integrity and respect for regional heritage built into their communities, in addition to attractive seasonal plants and flowers. Achieving such integrity requires good horticultural practices such as responsible pest management, plant selection appropriate to the region, good soil nutrition, drainage and water conservation and professional upkeep.

Additionally, a visible valuing of the community’s natural and architectural heritage sends a reassuring message that the area honours its past as a solid foundation for future growth and development. We believe that the BC Communities in Bloom program can be the catalyst needed to enhance the overall Garden Image of British Columbia with respect to tourism and to general economic development. We are proud to be an integral and founding proponent of this active initiative.

ADDITIONAL BENEFITS:
- Ignites Community Energy
- Encourages Tidiness & Beautification in Residential and Business Areas
- Networks Various Organizations for a Common Good
- Promotes Excellence in Environmental Initiatives
- Catalyst to Inventory Community’s Assets
- Friendly Competition provides Focus & Deadline for Projects
- Judge’s Report is a Cost Effective Measurement of Success

And lastly, the rich mosaic of cultural diversity in British Columbia brings with it opportunities to explore and enhance other garden traditions from around the world.


Evaluation Process


During July and August of each year, on an agreed date, two BC CiB judges assess the community on the accomplishments of their whole team (4 sectors): municipal, private, corporate and institutional.

Communities in Bloom Judges look for results on 8 essential criteria:
- Tidiness
- Environmental Action
- Community Involvement
- Heritage Conservation
- Urban Forestry
- Landscape
- Turf & Groundcovers
- Floral Displays



Results


All participating communities receive a rating of one to five ‘Blooms’ (unless entered as non-competitive). The community with a top five-bloom score (one in each population category) may receive an invitation to participate in the following year’s national program. All participants are promoted within BC and nationally, and are invited to attend the provincial Awards Ceremony which is hosted by a different community each fall.

A press release is sent to provincial media following the awards event. In addition to their rating, each BC CiB participant receives a comprehensive report, prepared by highly qualified judges. This report reviews the particular features and projects in each of the criteria areas that the community has undertaken and presented, and offers constructive hints and recommendations for the following year.

Of course, all participants are winners with respect to their ability to attract tourism, corporate relocations, new development, investment and general economic activity based on being more attractive, liveable communities!

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