Mile of Flowers Plant-In

Mile of Flowers Celebrates in 2017
Tuesday, May 30, 2017
5:00 - 7:30 pm

Mile of Flowers, the biggest planting event in Courtenay,  is marking 50 years of filling Cliffe Avenue with blooms and Canada’s 150th birthday in 2017.

The Plant-In is a tradition dating back to 1967, when Kathleen Kirk set out to commemorate Canada’s centennial year. That year she planted 7,800 seedlings as a welcome to tourists. What began as the initiative of one woman now involves hundreds of volunteers and 40,000 flowers.

In 2017, the Mile of Flowers happens Tuesday, May 30th starting at 5:00 pm and going until around 7:30 pm. Volunteers from the community are asked to fill the garden beds on both sides of Cliffe Avenue with summer flowers. The Parks department provides all the flowers. Youth groups are also encouraged to attend, with a chance to win a pool party prize draw. Between 200 and 500 volunteers are needed to plant everything on this special evening.

Tyler Johns, the City’s horticultural supervisor, said the event will be extra special this year. “Expect to see a lot of red and white flower combinations to celebrate Canada’s 150th,” noted Johns. “We’ll be in full celebration mode, so I hope many people and organizations come out and share the fun.”

As in previous years, Courtenay Rotary and the Parks Department will host an appreciation BBQ for planters in Standard Park. In 2017, the BBQ will be bigger than ever with local entertainers, and special cupcakes to commemorate the 50th anniversary year.

Did you know that aside from looking great every year, the Mile of Flowers is also now designed to conserve water?  Parks horticulture staff painstakingly adds compost, mulch and new soil to improve water retention. Staff handwater with a special tractor and avoid the use of pesticides. Careful hand weeding and deadheading keep the blooms coming all summer. Some of the beds also are looking great year round since changing over to perennial blooms.

The Parks staff sends heartfelt thanks to all the community volunteers who have helped for so many years.

For more information, please contact the City of Courtenay at 250-334-4441 or email