Marysville city staff members hope a few more green-thumbed residents will sign up for the city's beautification program by extending the program's deadline.

Marysville city staff members hope a few more green-thumbed residents will sign up for the city's beautification program by extending the program's deadline.

"Things have been going a little slow, which we've expected with the weather we've been having," city planner Greg DeLong said. "But we've still been trying to get some more interest."

The program, in its second year, highlights residents' gardens, landscaping and property exteriors that show the results of gardeners' efforts. Residents may nominate their own properties or those of friends or neighbors.

"The whole idea started last year with the city's comprehensive plan," DeLong said. "We had heard a lot of feedback from the residents; they wanted to see more encouragement and awarding people who had taken the time to beautify their properties. Being the headquarters of a place like Scotts (Co.), people here take a lot of pride in their gardens, and we want to recognize them for that."

Mill Creek Apartments property manager Roger Stiles, one of last year's program winners, said he has been preparing the apartment grounds for the spring.

"The company here is spectacular when it comes to their property," he said. "They do a lot of outside activities in the summertime, as far as planting flowers and making sure the landscaping is kept up. It's been a little too wet and saturated lately to get a lot done, but this property has come a long way. I'd love people to drive through the neighborhood and take a look at what we're doing around here."

Entrants in the program are judged on several categories, including first impression (general effect and overall curb appearance, backyard landscape included); selection and placement of materials, along with use of color and texture; originality of design (layout, form and function); and whether the improvements maintain and enhance the overall architectural character and integrity of the property.

Applications fall into several categories, considered either "property enhancement" or "beautifully maintained" for either residential or business properties. One winner will be chosen per city ward in each category, along with one business owner per category for businesses citywide. Applicants must use their own resources for the improvements (home improvements, painting, gardening, flower beds, etc.).

This year's program winners will be recognized during a Marysville city council meeting and be presented with a plaque for their gardens.

Applications for the program are due June 13.

DeLong said applications are available on the city's website, www.marysvilleohio.org, or at city hall, 125 E. Sixth St.