Asheville's Flower Bomb

Asheville’s Mysterious Flower Bomb Is The Biggest One Yet

A mysterious flower bomb took place on private property, under the cover of darkness, in complete anonymity. A poem was left behind claiming it was the bird of summer flowers that brought the marigolds to an abandoned building at 39 Banks Avene, in Asheville, North Carolina.

However only a human could have arranged the flower blooms into the shape of a giant keyhole or put dahlias in each apothecary jar with such care and concern.

An excerpt from the poem, written by an anonymous writer, reads as follows.

“She disappeared just as quickly as she had arrived.”

Some people say this flower bomb is the work of one woman, but there’s no way of knowing that for certain.

“If this were on the sidewalk, we would try to figure out who did it,” said Asheville Public Works Director Greg Shuler.

The flower bomb installation consists of a mixture of flowers that would have cost hundreds of dollars if bought through a florist.

Asheville's Recent Flower Bomb
A young girl walks through a flower display found on the floor of an abandoned building at 39 Banks Ave. in downtown Asheville’s South Slope area this week. (Photo courtesy of William Woody/Citizen Times)

In the past, similar flower bombs appeared on the streets of Asheville. The works of flower bomb artists have shown up in public places around the country, but those artists took credit for the work they did.
In Asheville, the trail of the mysterious flower bomb has gone cold.

Restaurants near the baffling installation of flowers do not have surveillance cameras, so they cannot check to find the mystery flower bomb artist.

Nonetheless, a few details may help in uncovering the mystery.

For example, Citizen-Times reports that about two years ago, a tree on the corner of Wall Street had a small flower bomb of marigolds hanging from its branches and a floral mandala created around its base with a handwritten poem stuck to its trunk.

Last year, a tree on College Street received a similar treatment with marigolds at its base, but this time dahlias in small apothecary jars were tied to hula-hoops hung from the tree’s willowing branches.

All three flower bombs were strategically distributed in September — they featured marigolds of red, orange, and yellow and came with a handwritten poem.

Flower Bomb On Asheville South Slope
Area residents inspect and take pictures of a flower display found on the floor of an abandoned building at 39 Banks Ave. in downtown Asheville’s South Slope area this week. (Photo courtesy of William Woody/Citizen Times)

David W. Cook, a Minnesota-based artist known as “The Flower Bomber,” told Citizen-Times in a phone interview he could not take credit for the recent work. In fact, his flowers are made from wood and duct tape, not from seeds.

“It’s not mine, but I might know why someone did it. Whenever I do an installation, I feel like a renegade. I wake up at 2 a.m. to do them and by 5 a.m., they are done. It’s exhausting work, but I do it because I like making people smile.”

This year’s local flower bomb was the largest one yet, with hundreds of marigolds scattered on the concrete floor of an abandoned building in Asheville’s South Slope neighborhood.

Devon Randall, a shop manager at Flora Boutique, commented about the mysterious Asheville flower bomb.

“Marigolds aren’t super expensive flowers but there were just so many there. Our floral designers here are thinking that it would have cost around $300 to $400 for all of them.”

Mandy Hornick, a grower and co-owner of Blue Ridge Blooms, identified five different flowers in the most recent flower bomb installation.

“If they did get them locally, they could probably get them for about $30 or $50 a bucket, but it looks like they probably had a good three buckets worth of flowers there if not more. Maybe they knew people and got a deal, but they’re definitely local. Dahlias just don’t get shipped. They’re grown.”

The poem left behind at Asheville’s mysterious and largest ever flower bomb reads as follows.

“Seven nights before the last night of summer and the first morning of autumn, the bird of summer flowers, flying high overhead looked down and spotted this empty building, hidden like a fleeting hand-written poem of time lost in a city that was growing swiftly and sleekly around it.

“Certain that the curvy steel arches of its spine would be the perfect perch to stop and rest her wings for the night, down she flew. Soon after she was nested comfortably on her perch, she began to sing lullabies in an undecipherable yet sweetly scented language to all the summer flowers that filled her wings and would soon be fading — and soon after, she drifted off into a well-deserved sleep.

“She awoke just before the light of day — so refreshed by her dreams of the night before, that she simply had to dance. It was a dance that comes rarely — a dizzying dance that buzzed like summer bees through every vein of her body — she surrendered to its trance — sipping in circles across the center of this cement floor as her petalled feathers drifted down in a swirl around her.

“The moment the morning sunlight touched her wings, she disappeared just as quickly as she had arrived —flying up and away into the fiery golden days of autumn — leaving nothing but a spray of her petalled feathers and the intoxicating scent of her dance behind.”

Perhaps it’s not such a bad idea if the flower bomb artist and poet continue creating their mysterious works of art.

[Featured image via William Woody/Citizen-Times]

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