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Making us pretty

Lydia Grimes | The Brewton Standard Keepers of the plants and flowers from the Brewton Utility Department are, left to right, back row, Elizabeth Sutton, Christina Green and Misty Harmon; front row, from left, Jessica Cardwell and Lee McDonald.

Lydia Grimes | The Brewton Standard
Keepers of the plants and flowers from the Brewton Utility Department are, left to right, back row, Elizabeth Sutton, Christina Green and Misty Harmon; front row, from left, Jessica Cardwell and Lee McDonald.

City crew works to beautify Brewton

The city of Brewton is blessed to have a group of employees who are working hard to make sure people get a good impression of our town.

Christina Green, supervisor of the tree and beautification group of Brewton, works together with the Brewton Tree and Beautification Board to put the best face forward by planting and maintaining trees, hanging baskets of flowers and even picking up the litter left along side of the road.

“We do a little of everything,” Green said. “This includes watering the hanging baskets around town. A few of them are on a watering system, but most of them have to be hand-watered.

“We have water trucks that go around from planter to planter making sure that they are getting enough water,” she said. “We also have to take out the dead leaves and trim some of the plants. Those that you see that are so long and healthy are sweet potato vines and they grow very fast.”

Craig Jerkins, Director of Public Works for the city, said in addition to the planters along the streets, they look after six parks scattered about town.

“We have planted a number of trees at Sportsman Park, and there are planters of flowers at each of the highways entering Brewton.”

Years ago, when the Tree and Beautification Board was organized, different board members took upon themselves the job of seeing that certain jobs were  done to beautify the city. Those beginnings led to the hanging baskets along the streets in downtown Brewton. With the help of many, including Joe Gordy, the baskets came together. For years Dennis Parker could be seen around town with his watering truck making sure that the plants didn’t dry out. Since that time, Parker has retired and the projects have gotten bigger and better organized. Today, there are five people in the Brewton Public Works Department who spend their days tending to planters and baskets.

“That is our responsibility, but there are others here in the department who quickly step in to help out if they are needed,” Green said. “We will soon be changing our summer flowers for the fall range of flowers.

“We all like what we do,” she added. “We have all worked outside and with plants for years. We also attend classes every so often to keep on top of things.”

One of the newest projects is to clear and plant walking trails behind Arby’s. They have hung baskets on the Murder Creek Bridge leading to East Brewton.

There may be nay sayers who see no reason for city workers to be spending their time working with flowers, but a reality check should clear that up. When strangers and home town residents see that beauty is important. It lets others know that Brewton is a place where residents are proud of their home town.

Green said she believes that residents appreciate the beautification projects.

“We have people stopping and complimenting us on how pretty the flowers are,” said Green. “We still find that we have a few litter bugs who throw trash out along the side of the road. In addition to working with the plants and trees, we also pick up trash we find along the way. The trash cans help, but they don’t eliminate the problem.”

Another job left to the department is the fun of putting up Christmas lights and taking them down. They say that job gets bigger every year.