Santa Paula Times

You might not know what America in Bloom is, but you see it all the time

March 08, 2013
Santa Paula News

You might not know what America in Bloom is, but you see it all the time; and now the organization dedicated to beautifying Santa Paula is coordinating a community effort to maintain the Bike Trail, expand its Hanging Basket Program, and is planning future landscape activities.

According to AIB Board Director Gary Nasalroad, there are organizations and individuals at the ready “that have agreed to take responsibility for maintenance on our new Bike Path.... We’ve got the Optimist Club taking care of Peck Road to Cameron; Cameron to Steckel Drive is Ashley Nichols; and Steckel to Dean Drive is America in Bloom.”

Santa Paula Hairdressers’ Shilo Perez and Kathy Splies have taken on grooming Dean Drive to Palm Avenue, the Future Farmers of America are taking care of Palm Avenue to 7th Street, and the Odd Fellows will handle 7th to 9th streets. The Kiwanis Club will take care of the final stretch of trail to the east between 9th and 12th streets.

Nasalroad said there’s a pretty firm regiment of care involved including a two-year commitment to the area adopted that includes a minimum monthly inspection of the stretch, removing trash and debris. Those adopting the stretches will weed or notify coordinator Nasalroad that weeds must be removed, as well as letting him know of any graffiti or vandalism, dying plants and brush, and anything that might be broken that needs city repair or replacement such as lights or irrigation lines.

Nasalroad said, “Signs identifying those responsible for this maintenance have just been finished.” Interim Recreation Director Ed Mount will ensure they are installed in coming weeks.

America in Bloom has also kept busy expanding the Hanging Basket Program: “Currently along Main between 7th and 10th streets we have installed hanging baskets on 36 poles,” and approval has been garnered to install hanging baskets on 20 more Main Street poles as well as eight poles on East Santa Barbara Street between 10th and Mill streets. 

“When this is completed, sometime between now and mid-March, we will have a total of 248 hanging baskets, which includes the 16 baskets hanging on Peck and Palm,” said Nasalroad. And, “of course, we have the 20 recently installed planters along Main that were purchased as a joint effort between Santa Paula Rotary and AIB at a cost of approximately $13,000.”

AIB is also a financial supporter of the Yard of the Month recognition and prizes awarded at the monthly Good Morning Santa Paula Chamber of Commerce breakfast meeting. In fact, for their continued efforts in sprucing up the city AIB was honored last month with the Chamber’s Beautification Project of the Year Award, recognition also presented to Santa Paula Chevrolet.

All this and more for the nonprofit AIB - a chapter of a national organization - that was founded only three years ago in February 2010. Beautification is an investment in community, with great rewards ranging from community pride and attracting visitors to stimulating local investment and creation of enterprise.

“I am so proud of the work our organization is doing and the level of community support we have received,” but, said Nasalroad, “None of this could have happened without the inspiration and financial commitment from Dudley and Dianne Davis, the owners of Do Right’s Nursery. They are the backbone, which makes it possible for all these wonderful things in our city to happen. Their commitment to the beautification of our city,” said Nasalroad, “is nothing short of amazing.”

The Davis’ financial commitment to AIB is supplemented with fundraising activities: AIB’s next major fundraising is the Giant Flower Sale April 20 & April 21 at Faulkner Farm. “This is a joint fundraiser for AIB and the Santa Clara Valley Hospice/Home Support Group,” said Nasalroad, that features flowers provided by three major area growers and nurseries.

Nasalroad said there is still a chance to take part in the AIB Memorial Dedications, signage installed on hanging basket poles inscribed with the name of a loved one or organization. The price is only $250, with an annual $100 renewal fee for ongoing maintenance of the flower containers.

For more information on America in Bloom email visit or the organization’s Facebook page. To volunteer call Shelly Coleman, 805-525-5781.