Government

Iowa City adopts black-eyed Susan as official flower

Goal is to inspire other plantings for birds, butterflies and bees

The sun shines through the petals of black-eyed Susans this summer near Solon. The Iowa City Council on Tuesday night adopted the flower as the city’s official flower.
The sun shines through the petals of black-eyed Susans this summer near Solon. The Iowa City Council on Tuesday night adopted the flower as the city’s official flower.

IOWA CITY — The black-eye Susan is now Iowa City’s official flower.

The City Council on Tuesday night voted unanimously to adopt the yellow-and-black bloom as the city’s official flower.

The flower, a member of the sunflower family, will be springing up in high-visibility plantings around the city as a message of community spirit.

The goal is to encourage residents to “plant native food sources for local pollinators,” exchange seeds and seedlings and take on other planting initiatives.

Project GREEN, a volunteer environmental and landscaping nonprofit, advocated for the flower’s adoption.

The flower is native to the area and attracts insects such as butterflies and bees and song birds like chickadees and goldfinches.

Council member John Thomas said the flower has numerous connections to the city.

Not only is it in the University of Iowa Hawkeye colors, but the seeds attract the state bird of Iowa, the goldfinch, and Iowa City was the state’s first capital.

“This is kind of a nice, delightful initiative,” Thomas said. “I think it’s a very appropriate and important, in its own way, just as an emphasis on the importance of our native landscape.”

l Comments: (319) 339-3172; maddy.arnold@thegazette.com

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