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Saskatoon city greenhouses on the verge of being condemned: report

Saskatoon will no longer supply its own flowers for its summer flowerpots and garden beds, according to a report before city councillors this week. Saskatoon will no longer supply its own flowers for its summer flowerpots and garden beds, according to a report before city councillors this week.
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Saskatoon will no longer supply its own flowers for its summer flowerpots and garden beds, according to a report before city councillors this week.

The City’s parks department has run the greenhouse at the Vic Rempel Yards since 1958, but the building will need to be vacated soon due to escalating structural concerns, city administration explained.

Konrad Andre, manager of parks operations, says an engineering assessment outlined concerns about rotting wood components, cracking and falling glass and snow loads in the winter.

Andre writes that staff could be ordered out at any time.

“While not condemned, risk is increasing and an order to vacate immediately could occur at any time, including when the greenhouse is fully stocked with seasonal material.”

With no plans in place to fund a new greenhouse facility, the city has opted to buy its seasonal plants from private growers for 2023.

The greenhouse is also home to an assortment of plants that were removed from the former civic conservatory at the Mendel building, according to the report.

Andre proposes to move some of those stored plants of “sentimental and/or community value” to other public buildings.

“It should be noted that outside of a greenhouse environment some plant material will be at a higher risk of decline and potentially death,” he said.

Based on how the outsourcing process goes, city council could decide to put the greenhouse program to bed for good by the end of summer 2023.

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