It may be turning cold, but Operation Daffodil is about to launch.
Starting next month, volunteers will fan out along Montague Street in Brooklyn Heights, planting 3,000 daffodil bulbs that will bloom in the spring.
“It’s going to look spectacular,” said Chelsea Mauldin, the executive director of the Montague Street Business Improvement District.
Unfortunately, before the daffodil deluge can come to fruition, the bulbs need to be planted — and what’s better than some good old-fashioned child labor to get the job done? On Nov. 4, middle school students from St. Ann’s School will begin the planting, followed by other local volunteers.
“The goal is for children to understand that they can have an impact on their community,” Mauldin said. “This can start them on a path of community service for the rest of their lives.”
The district decided on 3,000 bulbs because that’s how many can be jammed in the four-dozen tree pits yet still give the 18 varieties of bulbs some elbow room.
Not just any flower can stand up to the concrete, pollution and ravenous dogs on city streets. Mauldin contends that daffodils have what it takes to thrive in the less-than-ideal environment of Brooklyn Heights, particularly because they’re not as attractive to bulb-munching critters and urine-spewing canines.
The two full days of seed sowing under cold fall conditions won’t pay immediate dividends for planters, but Mauldin insists that delayed gratification is the bread and butter of flower enthusiasts.
“It teaches you patience and appreciation,” Mauldin asserted. “You have to take it on faith that it in five months, you’ll get a reward when the first green shoots poke up.”
This is the business district’s second major effort to spruce up Montague Street. Earlier this year, volunteers covered all the parking meters in knitted sweaters.