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Businesses, neighborhoods and public properties now can apply for the 2021 Madison Beautification Awards. CONTRIBUTED

Nominate now for 2021 Madison Beautification Awards

MADISON – A well-groomed grassy plot and mulched beds of shrubs and annual flowers always improve the view. To recognize these eye-pleasing sites, Madison Beautification and Tree Board is accepting nominations for the 2021 Madison Beautification Awards.

Business owners can apply for the recognition, awarded annually after judges confirm a series of requirements for the nominated properties. Before the pandemic, award winners were honored with a luncheon. The board places a beautification sign at each winning property.

For eligibility, the nominees must be a commercial, business, public property or government buildings within the city limits of Madison. Other nominations can be the commons or ‘public’ spaces at apartment complexes, condominiums, townhome developments, residential subdivisions, schools, hospitals and churches. Private residences are not eligible.

Application deadline is May 16, along with application fee of $25.

Judges will review three sections of criteria that must be complete at the nominee’s site:

* Unity, balance, aesthetics – Relates to overall attractiveness of the property. All components in the landscape design must blend. Plants should complement each other and contribute to an overall appearance. Groups of specimens will repeat design elements. Layout can be symmetrical for a formal pattern or asymmetrical in an informal placement.

* Maintenance and quality of planted areas – Largest category for detailed review of plant types. All categories must be free of disease with healthy specimens. Annuals, especially flowers, will be well maintained and vibrant. Trees and shrubs must have correct pruning and trimming. Ground covers must add interest and a flow in the landscape.

In flower beds, weed barriers or bare ground should not be visible. The beds should not have trash or debris.

A lawn should have thick grass with no bare spots. ‘Hardscapes’ (outside areas with permanent materials) contain attractive brick, stone or concrete in walls, sidewalks or benches; weeds are not growing in trails or walkways.

* Consideration for excellence – Judges will complete this section after confirming all points in the previous two sections. The property exhibits a level of pride in the landscape with colorful flowers, ornamental grasses and ground cover, along with clean and neat boundaries.

Submit nomination forms and application fees by check to City Clerk’s Office or mail to Beautification Board, 100 Hughes Road, Madison AL 35758. Judging will occur in June.

For more information, email keepmadisonbeautiful@gmail.com or visit madisonal.gov.

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