BULBS 101: Getting to Know our Bulbs – Part 2

By: Shelby Baker: Communications Intern

Bulbscape has begun and Keep Akron Beautiful couldn’t be more excited! If you are considering purchasing bulbs this year but are not sure what types we have, you’re in luck! Check out our second set of bulbs and see if any sound like a good fit for your garden!


  • SquillStriped Squill – Success is the only option for these little bulbs! Create a carpet of pleasant ice-blue flowers on your lawn. Place a handful here and there in your garden for an icy emphasis. Wherever your heart desires, plant these bulbs and watch them bloom successfully from March through April!





  • WindflowersGrecian Windflowers – Grecian Windflowers make a pretty addition to any lawn or garden. Use them as a border in your garden or produce a natural-looking floral carpet in your lawn. The possibilities with these bulbs are endless!






  • PastelsPastel Tulip Mix – Craft lovely bouquets into center pieces for Easter dinner or plant them in your garden and make your mother-in-law jealous! However you use them, these soft colored tulips are the perfect blend of pastel colors for your garden and home this spring!





  • snowcrocusSnow Bunch Crocus – Come March, if you can’t wait for the snow to melt, Snow Bunch Crocus are the bulbs for you! This group of purple, yellow and white bulbs bloom right before spring, bringing liveliness back to any garden. Get a jump on your spring flowerbed and order Snow Bunch Crocus today!





  • Martinette NMartinette Narcissus – Although these bulbs look much like Daffodils, they are a completely different flower we assure you! These smaller bulbs have a strong scent lasting through all of April and grow in clusters of four to eight blooms. Move over King Alfred, there’s a group of new aromatic bulbs in the flowerbed!





  • Giant tulipsGiant Dutch Tulips – Giant Dutch tulips rule the tulip world. Considered the toughest of all tulips, these bulbs flower for years in a colorful bi-color and solid color display. These giants are great for any garden looking for tulips that are willing to go the extra mile to stand out!





  • LiliesNew Tiger Lilies – These new and improved bulbs are extraordinary to say the least. Blooming in at an enormous height of 3’ – 4’ tall, these bulbs are huge! Adding to their hugeness is their exquisite display of red, white, yellow, and pink dotted petals. Planting these striking beauties will add a marvelously exotic feel to your garden from July to September.




  • Blue BellsHeavenly Blue Bells – Besides being beautiful, these bulbs are quite tough and easy to take care of. Heavenly Blue Bells tend to live for many years and thrive well when planted next to tulips or daffodils. However, pairing them with any flower will present a lovely accent to your garden.





  • the_works_large“The Works” – This assortment has everything you need to have a charming conventional spring garden. With a variety of alpine bells, tulips, hyacinths, daffodils, bluebells and snow bunch crocus, you can’t go wrong! This package is great for first time bulb growers or those who can’t decide which bulb would look best in their lawns. Why settle for one type of bulb, when you can have this lovely hodgepodge of bulbs bloom in your garden next spring?!



After getting to one each one of our bulbs, we hope that you can find the perfect match for your garden!

Want to know more about bulbs? Make sure to check in on the KAB blog throughout the upcoming weeks. Bulbscape is in season, so we will be sharing more on bulbs to help make sure you are prepped and ready for planting season!


Don’t Let Fall Cause You To Fall Behind On Your Flowerbed Chores

By: Shelby Baker – Communications Intern
When fall approaches the leaves change color, pumpkins are everywhere, and our wardrobes get thicker. With everything else changing, you might not consider your flowerbeds. Just like everything else, your flowerbed needs to be altered as well. Here are some chores that need done before fall ruins the beautiful work put into your flowers this past summer.

Weeding and Cleaning
Don’t let your beds fall behind on weeding and cleaning this fall! Avoiding these chores can make it harder to maintain your beds the following spring! Make sure to continue picking weeds in your garden and removing dead items, such as sticks, leaves, and flowers. Not only will this chore make your garden look pristine, it will keep it healthier as well!

Dead items like this should be removed from your beds before winter comes!

Dead items like this should be removed from your beds before winter comes!


Loosen up Soil
If you have been avoiding this chore all summer now is the time to get it done! Aerating your soil should be done frequently and is a quick fix to make sure your soil stays in top shape for your flowers! You can get this done by using a shovel to lift and blend the soil together. It’s that simple! After mixing your soil you can smooth it back out and water it to really maximize your bed’s health!

Shovel and Soil --- Image by © L. Clarke/Corbis

You should mix your soil regularly to help your flowers grow better!

Narrow Down Your Garden
Gardens can sometimes become unruly during the summer months. If your garden has seemed to expand, slim it down to get it back in tip-top shape. Weeding and removing dead debris can assist a lot, but sometimes plants can just grow to close together! This can be mended by removing a few plants here and there. Make sure to excavate the entire root to make sure the flower does not grow back. This opens up more space for the remaining flowers to breathe and absorb nutrients.


This Flowerscape site is a good example of how close flowers in your bed should be!

These quick fixes in the fall can really keep your bed healthy and prepared for next spring! After completing fall chores, it is an ideal time to plant your fall bulbs! Planting fall bulbs in a healthy groomed flowerbed can almost guarantee healthy beautiful bulb blooms the following spring! Make sure to complete your chores soon, as the first frost will be here before you know it!

Flowerscape Season Coming to an End

By: Lauren Brady – Communications Intern

It seems hard to believe that we are two days away from officially entering the season of fall! Time to break out our jackets, pour some hot cider and enjoy the beautiful changing leaves all around Northeast Ohio. But, as cooler weather approaches and we say, “See ya later,” to the warm summer days, we must also say goodbye to our lovely Flowerscape sites throughout the City of Akron. flowerscape 1 (2)

Our Flowerscape crews have worked hard all spring and summer to keep up with the lovely flowerbeds, and Flowerscape Director, Polly S. Kaczmarek, is already busy making landscape plans and nursery orders for the 2016 Flowerscape season! As we get further into the season of fall, our crews will begin “winterizing” the beds throughout the city to keep them safe for preparation next spring. We couldn’t be more grateful for all of their hard work and commitment to keeping Akron beautiful!


flowerscape 3 (1)

Along with our hard-working crews, we are also grateful for our Flowerscape sponsors who continue to keep this wonderful program alive throughout the city! Akron Beacon Journal, Akron Children’s Hospital, Akron Community FoundationThe Henry V. & Frances W. Christenson Foundation, Karcher Group, Medical Mutual and The Charles E. and Mable M. Ritchie Memorial Foundation all contribute a generous amount of support to Keep Akron Beautiful (KAB) to help maintain the Flowerscape program and other beautification projects around the city. Thank you for your continuous support of KAB, sponsors! If you’re interested in becoming a sponsor for Flowerscape, find additional information on our website.

In addition to all of our sponsored Flowerscapes, we also recently dedicated a location to former KAB CEO, Paula Davis, to honor her for the impact she made not only here at KAB, but around the entire Akron community. Read more about Paula’s Flowerscape location on one of our previous blog posts.

e market and buchtel     wallhaven & Hardesty park Rand & Market

While you’re driving around town these next couple weeks, make sure to stop by any of our Flowerscape locations to enjoy the last bit of summer! You can find all of our  Flowerscape locations here! If you can’t find the time to make it out, though, you can always take a look at our Flowerscape album on Facebook!

Thank you, again,  to our entire Flowerscape crew and sponsors! As we wrap up another successful year of the program we are already looking forward to another wonderful Flowerscape season in 2016!

Climate Change inspired installation at Akron Art Museum

By: Lauren Brady – Communications Intern

Environmental issues are sometimes beyond our realm of understanding and seem quite difficult to grasp. Even though we may not be able to quite understand what is going on with the climate of the earth, we are able to see the physical changes taking place on our planet without realization.

Charles Beneke, professor and printmaking area coordinator at the University of Akron’s Mary Schiller Myers School of Art, was able to use art to portray his feelings and understanding of global warming and climate change. One of his installations of a series addressing the changes our planet is going through is named Specter, and is featured downtown at the Akron Art Museum.

image3The installation features wallpaper that was hand-printed by Beneke and flows into a monstrous three-dimensional cloud of smoke and smog that engulfs the gallery much like the greenhouse gasses being emitted into our environment.  In his artist talk on Sunday, September 13, Beneke revealed much of his inspiration for the piece, and explained that the direction the billowing smoke element travels is based on the prevailing winds of Northeast Ohio.2

The screen-printed wallpaper features trees which turn into smokestacks and then oil derricks which eventually become the giant cyclone of cloudy, grey smoke dominating much of the gallery. Along with screen-printing, Specter, also includes other print-making techniques such as laser-cutting, mono-printing, and relief-printing.

image1 (1)Beneke also included an interactive element to the gallery. “Trade Your Carbon for Art” allows patrons to take a printed form with them if they share their own ideas and goals for decreasing their carbon footprint.

Beneke received a grant which allowed him to travel to Greenland and see the effects of global warming firsthand. He was able to channel this experience and many others to inspire the creation of Specter. It’s not only a piece that will leave you awe-struck by its extraordinary detail and multi-dimensional elements, but it will also leave you with an important message, and hopefully inspire you to modify your lifestyle for the sake of our planet and the climate.

Printed pieces that viewers can take after making a pledge to reduce their carbon footprint.

Printed pieces that viewers can take after making a pledge to reduce their carbon footprint.

Stop by the Akron Art Museum through January 3rd, 2016 to see this inspiring installation in the Judith Bear Isroff Gallery. For those that don’t know, Keep Akron Beautiful is proud to call Judith Bear Isroff their first executive director!
Keep updated with the artist’s online journal, featured on his website, to increase your understanding of why his work, and these issues are so important to him.