A downtown Sonora parking lot is getting a dash of new color thanks to a volunteer program sponsored by retail hardware giant Lowe’s.

Employees for the Sonora store volunteered Saturday morning to prep soil for a garden that will be planted next weekend at the public parking lot on the southeast corner of South Washington and Church streets.

Mayor Connie Williams said the garden design is based on a red, white and purple color palette selected by the Vision Sonora Design and Marketing Subcommittee with input from Tuolumne County Master Gardeners.

The plan is to duplicate the color scheme in plantings throughout the city’s historic downtown commercial district.

“We decided we would start with the fountain parking lot because it was pretty overgrown, out of balance and out of shape,” Williams said.

Williams said the materials and labor are being provided as part of Lowe’s Heroes Program, while a drip-irrigation system will be installed by the city’s Public Works staff.

Blue Mountain Minerals also donated a rock from its limestone quarry near Columbia.

The Lowe’s program was established more than 10 years ago to encourage employees to volunteer in their communities, according to the company’s website.

Lowe’s volunteers are scheduled to return at 9 a.m. Saturday to plant daisies, red and white roses, daffodils and lavender flowers.

“Anything we can do to make the downtown Sonora area more beautiful and inviting is a positive,” Williams said.

Williams noted that there are no plans for repairing the non-functioning fountain at the corner of the parking lot.