Ector County ISD’s horticulture program will be having its spring sale starting April 20 at the greenhouse at 104 S. Grandview Ave.
Horticulture teacher Christina Butler said hours will be 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. They are going to start with district employees and plans are to open to the public after the first couple of days.
The sale will continue until plants run out. For more information, people may email Butler at Christina.email@example.com
“We’re just trying to follow COVID guidelines still and make sure it’s safe …,” Butler said.
Currently, there are 15 students in the horticulture program from Permian and Odessa high schools. She gets students from George H.W. Bush New Tech Odessa sometimes.
Butler said they are preparing for the sale and propagating some plants. They were going to plant some March 30 at the ECISD Development Office.
About 500 plants will be available for purchase. The selection of plants will include succulents, aloe vera, petunia baskets, starter plants that the students propagated, as well as geraniums.
“We have a select few, but not very many. I think I ordered 200 geraniums and that’s all we ordered,” Butler added.
All the proceeds go back into the greenhouses because they’re self-sufficient, Butler said.
But after this year, the horticulture program will move out to the district agriculture farm, at 7649 W. Dunn St., where two new greenhouses will be built.
“I’m excited. It’s a long time coming,” Butler said.
The current greenhouses have been held together through sheer ingenuity over the years. The recent blizzard caused a burst pipe.
“And then, of course, with the ice storm we already had spring plants come in and so we were trying to battle with it being too cold, it being too hot, the heaters not working, things like that,” she added. “And then the lightning would always strike our panels and we’d have to get new panels and so we’re ready for new greenhouses, for sure.”
Butler is hoping the move will attract more students to the program.
“… I think that we’ll touch more kids just in the ag program in general because even the animal science kids could help in the greenhouse and vice versa, and the plant kids can help out the farm and so I think overall the program would draw in more kids that way,” Butler said.
Jacee Scrogum and Stacy Grace are both 17-year-old seniors at OHS. Scrogum has been in the program for two years and this is Grace’s third year.
“I’ve always been into agriculture. I moved here for agriculture classes. …,” Grace said.
Scrogum had a friend that was in the class, was telling Scrogum about it and “it just seemed really fun.”
Being from Odessa, Scrogum said she never really knew what agriculture was. She knew about the oilfield.
“But after being in the program, it’s really shown me that it’s not just animals …,” Scrogum said.
Both are looking forward to the sale. They both went to the greenhouse on a Saturday to prepare for it. Scrogum said it was her, Stacy, a couple of other students and some teachers.
“… We were all up here, and we planted all the spring plants and we’ll be a part of it whenever it actually starts,” Scrogum said.
She added that there was a sale last year, but it ended early because of COVID.
Both Grace and Scrogum have found a love of flowers.
“… Ever since joining the program and being in FFA … it’s like, once you get into it you kind of never want to get out of it,” Scrogum said.