Mr. Petunia

UTR-Webmaster Episode 205

Meet Dale Boss (aka Mr. Petunia). He’s lived there for all of his eighty-plus years, and he’s a man with a single mission: to make Charlevoix Beautiful. Thirty years ago, he launched an effort to plant five miles of petunias through the heart of the city. The program took root, and every summer for the past three decades, Mr. Petunia has headed out at four o’clock in the morning seven days a week to water his beloved flowers. He’s put more than forty million gallons of water on almost two million petunias.

The early years were tough, but now thanks to help from the community, he drives around a mechanical watering truck that gets the job done in much less time. This really is a community effort. Every spring a thousand local residents grab thousands of flats of flowers and plant the entire five mile stretch (both sides of the street) in an hour and a half. Incredible. Then they all head down to the town park for a big picnic.

Mr. Petunia is so dedicated to this task it’s inspiring. In the thirty plus years he’s been doing it, he’s never missed a day. And the only days he gets off are when it rains. Thank you Mother Nature. Quite honestly, if there were more people like Dale Boss in the world, it would be a much better place. Even without a cape, he’s a true super hero. Lucky for us, we’ve got Mr. Petunia right where he belongs, and right here in Michigan.