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Marble Falls High School FFA plant sale March 10

Marble Falls High School sophomore Kylee Snyder

Marble Falls High School sophomore Kylee Snyder checks hanging baskets of petunias to make sure they are ready for the FFA plant sale from 7:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Thursday, March 10, in the school's greenhouse, 2101 Mustang Drive in Marble Falls. Staff photo by Daniel Clifton

Marble Falls High School senior Dharma Brown envisions a future in which she’s helping set up community gardens and teaching people the importance of gardening.

“We as Americans rely a lot on fast food, and we don’t know where our food comes from,” she said. “I think people should know not only where their food comes from, but I think they should know how to grow their own food as well.”

The Highland Lakes community can help Brown and other Marble Falls High School horticulture students on their journey by shopping the FFA plant sale from 7:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Thursday, March 10, in the school’s greenhouse, 2101 Mustang Drive. Signs will point to the greenhouse, which is located behind the main campus.

“We have a variety of plants,” said agriculture science teacher Emily Skaggs. “We have vegetables, flowers, and bedding plants. Just come out and explore, see what we have.”

All sales are cash and check only. Students will be on hand to assist shoppers. The money benefits the school’s greenhouse and FFA programs, helping students such as Brown and sophomore Kylee Snyder.

“I started in FFA in eighth grade, and I’ve learned a lot from it and the ag classes,” Snyder said. “I enjoy the horticulture and plants the most. These classes have really helped me learn about plants and everything. I want to be a botanist.”

Students study and practice a number of plant propagation techniques, both in and out of a traditional classroom setting. In their horticulture class, students get their hands dirty, Skaggs said. They manage the greenhouse and take care of the plants, checking for disease, propagating, and watering. They also help maintain the facility. 

Students also learn where horticulture can take them career-wise, although Skaggs noted that not everyone who takes the class pursues it beyond high school. The lessons and skills they learn, however, follow them into any career they choose.

To prepare for the sale, Skaggs required each student to pick at least one business and approach the owner or manager to ask if they could put a sign advertising it inside the business. The idea, she said, was to get the students used to public speaking and interacting with others. 

During the plant sale, students will work shifts to assist customers. Again, Skaggs said, it’s a chance for students to practice interpersonal skills. 

“So come out to the plant sale and check out the greenhouse,” Brown said. “See what we’re doing.”

daniel@thepicayune.com