Community lends a hand in Daffodil Project

TUPELO – More than 50 volunteers got down and dirty at Veteran’s Park on Saturday.
The volunteers planted 50,000 daffodil bulbs for the third year of the city’s Daffodil Project. In three years, daffodils have been planted all over the city as a beautification initiative.
Sherrie Cochran, Tupelo’s environmental planner, said the project has been a big success.
“Beautification is always important to a city,” said Cochran. “It shows our visitors that we care about our town and therefore they’ll care and respect it more as well. The community has done a great job of chipping in and helping us make this project a very successful one.”
Mayor Jack Reed Jr. traded in his usual City Hall digs for a T-shirt, gloves and small shovel. He helped plant nearly 500 buds.
“This is Tupelo at its best,” he said, pointing at the dozens of people on their hands and knees, filling holes with buds. “This is what we love to see, people participating in making their city a better, more beautiful place.”
People of all ages pitched in Saturday. Four-year-old Joshua Benefield helped his mother, Christine Benefield, carry a heavy sack of buds. Benefield, a manager at Kohl’s, didn’t mind getting a little dirty for a good cause. As part of their Associates in Action Program, Kohl’s employees planted the daffodils to give back to the community.
“This is a great community with great people and we are happy to be able to come out here to help,” she said.
Cochran said it will be early March or April before the daffodils bloom, but said it will be well worth the wait.
“This is going to be beautiful,” said Cochran. “Daffodils are wonderful to look at and it’s going to make Veteran’s Park look even better than it does now.”
Contact Danza Johnson at (662) 678-1583 or danza.johnson@djournal.com.

DANZA JOHNSON / NEMS Daily Journal