Serving the Tarrant County College District

The Collegian

Serving the Tarrant County College District

The Collegian

Serving the Tarrant County College District

The Collegian

Annual spring plant sale sprouts smiles

Hope Smith/The Collegian
Wayne Bird and Zachary Poster volunteered to help run the annual plant sale at NW, assisting with transporting the plants.

Crowds of community members gathered at the front of NW Campus’ yard early in the morning to browse through the hordes of plants available for purchase

Since this January, students of the NW horticulture program have been cultivating these plants to be sold at the annual plant sale on April 5, ranging from aromatic curry plants to vibrant floral baskets.

Lauren Poster, a NW student in the horticulture program and volunteer for the event has found a passion for the plant world after the pandemic by growing her own garden. She soon realized she wanted to pursue it at TCC.

“It was very a very easy transition for myself being already a TCC student, and that’s how I got started,” she said. “I’ve loved it ever since.

She was shocked to see how many plants the students were able to yield since the beginning of the year and said that it was phenomenal to meet people at the plant sale who are enthusiastic about the product.

“What you’re seeing here is all our hands on technical knowledge, where we really do dive into the science as far as the chemistry and biology of plant growing,” she said.

NW cafe employee Aliyah Thomas said she likes that this event is being held because it allows the college to experience larger scale events.

“This is not a university and I feel like universities have more events to meet everyone and get around and stuff here,” she said. “There’s not always so much, I know they try their best to pick up different things, but this is really cool.”

Greta Bowling, NW dean of math and science said that being able to organize the plant sale yearly helps the horticulture department to shine

“I think it’s great for the community because it gives people who might not venture onto the campus an opportunity to do that,” she said. “It brings them here and allows us to have some conversations about what TCC has to offer.”

She has seen previous plant sales like this one but noted that it was one of the bigger ones she has seen in the past few years. She explained that she has enjoyed how much the horticulture program has grown.

“There’s so much potential here with this program, and I know that what we’ve seen is a lot of success,” she said.

The money from the sale will go to the department, with most of it being dedicated to the conference a select few students get to attend, called the National Collegiate Landscape Competition.

Cameron Grant, a learning lab manager at the NW horticulture department, explained that the students of the program have been dedicated to the work of caring for the greenhouse plants.

“They do a great job, they take care of everything,” he said.

He said he has watched students grow in knowledge and confidence as they move through the program.

“I’ve seen them grow from not knowing anything about plants and calling soil ‘dirt,’ to actually calling it soil and understanding what is going on to help a plant grow,” he said. “I see a lot of knowledge learned from students that they did not know before.”

Along with caring for the plants, students also make the soil to grow them, called coco coir, and designed the flower baskets at the sale.

“They could actually come in here [the greenhouse] and grab anything they wanted, so that’s all their creativity and everything,” he said.

There are longtime resident plants, as Grant explained because the greenhouses contain plants that predate his own attendance of the college when he was once a student.

To adapt to the changing agricultural industry, he said the department wants to include improved greenhouses with more energy efficiency, hydroponics equipment and introducing more crops

“In all of our all of our classes, we talk about current trends within the industry as well so that way, students are well prepared and they know what is going on,” he said. “That’s why the plan is to get this greenhouse upgraded and to keep them up with the trends that are going on.”

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