LeCroy to sell greenhouse plants

Published 2:41 pm Thursday, March 16, 2017

By JOYANNA LOVE/ Senior Staff Writer

LeCroy Career Technical Center greenhouse students will be showing off their work by selling their plants during the month of April.

“We will start April 3, and will run pretty much the entire month of April or until we run out of plants,” greenhouse teacher Landon Lowery said.

Some of the plants available will be impatiens, petunias, begonias, coleus, marigolds, lantanas, vegetable plants and strawberries.

Lowery said the students do the majority of the work growing the plants from seeds or plugs, and then handling sales. The students also harvest the strawberries.

The sale will be held at LeCroy from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. during the first week of April and 3:30 to 5 p.m. after that. Lowery said selling the plants helps pay for the program and fund FFA trips to conferences.

Lowery said the greenhouse class uses plants that are popular.

“I will go out on a limb sometimes and try something new,” Lowery said.

This year new varieties include the sunpatiens and ghost pepper plants.

“[It is] the world’s hottest pepper it’s like four or five times hotter than a habanero,” Lowery said.

Lowery said Celebrity and Mountain Fresh Plus tomato plants are a top selling plant each year for the greenhouse class.

Joshua Smith, a junior in the class, said tomatoes and broccoli are the most popular vegetable plants.

Brennen Johnston, a senior, said customers also like more tropical and southern plants.

“Like the begonia or we have the angel leaf, they are more of a tropical plant,” Johnston said.

Many of the plants will be sold as a flat or a six pack. Prices vary depending on the plant.

Lowery said he enjoys showing the students the growth and progression of a plant from a seed to a blossoming plant.

“Alabama’s number one industry is Ag, and so there are a lot of carriers, whether they are doing this the rest of their life they will be doing something related to Ag,” Lowery said.

Varieties of hanging potted plants will also be for sale.

Students in the greenhouse course are divided into two classes of mostly juniors and seniors. One meets in the morning and the other meets in the afternoon. Lowery said these students also take forestry and turf management classes as a part of their agriculture focus.

“The students wind up with six credits over the of the two-year period and they wind up with credentials in forestry, turf grass management, landscape design that they can then put forward to a career making $10-$15 an hour in a landscape business,” Lowery said.

In addition to spending time in the greenhouse, students have also taken care of the school’s strawberry patch outside of Thorsby.