The Bridgeport FFA and students at the Bridgeport High school are growing skills and growing plants in the new greenhouse at the Bridgeport High School.
The greenhouse has been something the group and the community have been looking at doing for a while, but only recently has it all come together with fundraisers and donations.
Construction began in the summer and by the fall in time for students, the greenhouse was ready for plants.
“The greenhouse is 60X30 with a headhouse, where we do planning and have our sale point,” said Zach Malcolm, FFA advisor and instructor of the plant science class at BHS.
The first plants the FFA and plant science students grew, were poinsettias, which came from O’Neill, Neb.
The plants also presented the students with their first challenge.
“We learned how to identify pests, as we had pests in there with the poinsettias,” said Jocelyn Poh, president of the Bridgeport FFA chapter and a senior at BHS. “We found some white flies, which were kind of hard to identify as they were so small.”
The students, learned about the pests, how to get rid of them and how to do it in a timely manner to have their crop of more than 200 plants ready for sale.
While a few of the poinsettias are still waiting to be sold, the students are getting ready to plant Easter Lilies and have plans to share the greenhouse with the elementary students.
“We’re looking forward to some projects with our elementary kids, growing flowering plants for Mother’s Day,” Malcolm said.
Pohl enjoys the class, as it offers her some hands-on experience, unlike other classes in school.
“In the greenhouse, you get out of the classroom and have real learning experiences, like at a real job in a greenhouse,” she said.
The greenhouse will be used year round, as the students and FFA members intend to grow summer plants for yards and vegetables.
“We’re hoping to have vegetables, year round for our lunchrooms at school,” Malcolm said.
The sale of the plants from the greenhouse will help the FFA students attend events throughout the year and pay the loan they took out to complete the greenhouse.