Iowa City flower supports two black-and-gold mascots: Honeybees and Herky

The Iowa City City Council passed a resolution to adopt the black-eyed Susan as the city flower in order to support pollinators such as bees and butterflies.


File photo

The Old Capitol is shown on Monday, July 25, 2016.

Maria Kuiper, News Reporter

The Iowa City City Council passed a resolution Tuesday night to adopt the black-eyed Susan as its city flower.

The resolution was prompted by Project GREEN, a non-profit organization which invests in beautifying and maintaining public landscapes.

The black-eyed Susan was picked by Project GREEN to attract pollinators such as butterflies and bees, as well as a number of songbirds.

RELATED: IMU garden aids pollinator insect populations

The resolution aims to encourage citizens of Iowa City to plant these flowers as food sources for its local pollinators. Project GREEN also hopes the resolution will promote neighbors to come together exchange seeds and plan other initiatives for planting.

Another asset of the new city flower is that it is supporting the University of Iowa by sporting black and gold, and the black-eyed Susan represents justice, according to Project GREEN.

Recent local and statewide initiatives have begun to focus more on pollinators such as Iowa Honey Bee Day, a proclamation signed by Gov. Kim Reynolds earlier this year, and the Iowa City Monarch Festival, which focuses on preventing the Monarch butterfly from becoming extinct.

RELATED: Project GREEN spruces up public spaces & expands gardens

Previously reported by the DI, the UI Facilities Management and Sustainable Systems class has also implemented gardens to help give pollinators a home behind the IMU with many plants that attract bees and butterflies.

In another previous DI article about Iowa Honey Bee Day, a native beekeeper said the next step to help pollinators is for mayors of Iowa to follow the governor’s lead by supporting pollinators, and the Iowa City City Council seems to be doing just that.

RELATED: Iowa Honey Bee Day celebrates the importance of bees

“This is a nice, delightful initiative and there are so many way it ties into Iowa City: the colors, the goldfinch, and with Iowa City being the former state capital,” councilor John Thomas said. “I think it is very appropriate and important in its own way on the importance of our native landscape.”