Onslow Elementary prepares to Say It With Flowers



Kate Aley


Above, Onslow Home and School coordinator Stacey Johnston, [in black, center] explains the bulb planting process to eager helpers. 

It takes more than mud to deter a good gardener and the afternoon of October 16 proved it. Approximately 30 students, parents, teachers and community members assembled to help plant 1,000 red and white tulip bulbs in a new bed created on the front lawn of Onslow Elementary in Quyon. The garden will bloom as part of Canada's 150th celebrations next year.

Onslow principal Grady Robson gets his hands in the dirt. 

Stacey Johnston of the Onslow Home and School committee applied to be one of the 150 communities across Canada chosen to host a celebration garden. Two big boxes of free bulbs were happily pressed into pre-dug holes by many eager hands including MNA for Pontiac, Andre Fortin. "It's so nice that everyone in the community wants to be part of the [centennial] celebration," said Fortin. "We have a tradition of doing Canada Day well in Quyon!  This a special day today and [it will be] a nice moment for the kids when the bulbs come up."

Despite the rain, people love to plant.

Johnston added that the Home and School organization would plan another event when the flowers came up, including a visit from a Dutch parent to explain the significance of tulips in Canada and the special link with the Netherlands formed during WWII.

Blooming beauties Madi Ream [left] and Maddy Belland.

For now, the garden is large square of dirt but it would seem that excited anticipation for the coming celebratory year has been well planted in the Onslow students' imaginations.

Proud to take part, from left: Municipality of Pontiac's mayor Roger Larose, Pontiac MNA Andre Fortin and councilor Nancy Draper-Maxsom.

The finishing touches are put on the garden by, from left, Alvin Johnson, Ricky Belland and Chris Dowe.

Thanks to Mountainview Turf Farm for the equipment, transport and topsoil.