Linus "Sam" Sabelka keeps the flowers blooming all summer - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Linus "Sam" Sabelka keeps the flowers blooming all summer in Calmar

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CALMAR (KWWL) -

Bright and early every morning, Linus "Sam" Sabelka waters and fertilizes the City of Calmar's flower arrangements before going to a full day of work in New Hampton.

"I get up about 3:20 a.m. I start watering about 3:45. On a good day, I'm done by 5:45," said Sam Sabelka.

Sabelka uses a 200 gallon tank to make sure the flowers stay vibrant from May to October. This is the fourth year for the beautification project, which Sabelka started just by asking the city council for money for flowers.

"It was going to start out with 16 baskets that year. Then we had flower boxes that weren't full, so I filled them. By the end of the first year we had 40. At the end of the second year we went to different big baskets and went to 80. Right now we're at 140," said Sabelka.

People in the community donate money to the project to keep it growing.

"I get calls from other cities, what do you do to your flowers to make them so beautiful? I say it's all Sam," said Calmar City Clerk Michele Elsbernd.

Sam Sabelka takes care of the watering every day, but he does get help with creating the displays. The baskets are made by a man in Rushford, Minnesota and extra flowers purchased to fill barrels and boxes around town were arranged by a church youth group in town.

He encourages others not to be afraid to put an idea into action, it could bloom into something bigger.

"The town wouldn't look so beautiful without him," said Elsbernd.

Sam Sabelka said getting up early every morning to water and fertilize the flowers is worth it to keep his town looking beautiful all summer long.

Sabelka has also served on the fire department for 23 years, he's on the city council and the 911 board.

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