Blooms shrug off snow

Snowdrops bloom in gardener Myrna Wright’s yard on St. Patrick Street. They and others will be tallied this week during the annual Victoria Flower Count.

Snowdrops bloom in gardener Myrna Wright’s yard on St. Patrick Street. They and others will be tallied this week during the annual Victoria Flower Count.

Annual flower count gets underway

Any flowers already in bloom took a beating during last week’s snowfall.

The 35th annual Victoria Flower Count nonetheless got underway this week without interruption. 

Bruce Carter of the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce made a confident prediction last week: “(The snow) will be gone, and our flowers will be out.”

Oak Bay is defending champion in the friendly competition between municipalities.

In 2010, the non-scientific count tallied 21 billion blooms, of which Oak Bay claimed over half.

“They won last year, because a Grade 1 and 2 class just counted a ton of flowers,” Carter said. This year, students in Grade 4 and 5 will participate instead, drawing on their math curriculum of estimating numbers. 

The region’s residents are encouraged to count flowers anywhere in their municipality and log the results at www.flowercount.com.

“I think if you tried to audit the results, it would fail,” Carter said with a laugh. He added that other Canadian cities are welcome to challenge Victoria’s claims of having the most flowers in bloom in March.

Local mayors and council members were set to participate in a flower arranging contest at the event launch yesterday at the Bay Centre.

Event organizers will be sending daffodils to media outlets across the country to market the city.

rholmen@vicnews.com