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Victoria's annual flower count begins Thursday

Feb 29 2012
The flower count is organized by regional chambers of commerce, Butchart Gardens and Tourism Victoria. 

The flower count is organized by regional chambers of commerce, Butchart Gardens and Tourism Victoria.

Photograph by: Adrian Lam , timescolonist.com

It has been a bloomin' publicity stunt to boost tourism in Victoria for 35 years.

Since 1977, media outlets across Canada and the U.S. have received bouquets of daffodils at this time of year to promote Greater Victoria and its annual flower count.

"When we get them it's a little like Groundhog Day," CTV Ottawa weather forecaster J.J. Clarke said Tuesday. "[The daffodils are] a harbinger of spring. I admit it does makes me a bit envious to know you can play golf now, but it also reminds me spring is just around the corner."

Clarke said the flowers invariably end up on-air, with a mention of where they came from, and why.

Starting Thursday, Victorians will again venture out to count blossoms in backyards, boulevards, fields and parks. Two years ago, Victorians counted a record 21 billion flowers during the one-week event.

"The flower count is a fun and cheeky way to remind ourselves and the rest of the country about our wonderful climate and quality of life," said John Espley, Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce chairman.

The flower count is organized by regional chambers of commerce, Butchart Gardens and Tourism Victoria.

Everybody can participate. Submit counts to 250-360-BUDS or online at flowercount.com. — Pedro Arrais, Times Colonist

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