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Digging, planting and learning
Horticulture students produce beautiful mums, pansies for fall

TCC horticulture students have been digging, planting and learning in the greenhouses on the Chesapeake Campus. And the end result includes a beautiful batch of pansies and mums for fall planting.

The pansies are colorful and plentiful and include a new variety of Cool Waves. During the growing process, students encountered some problems. "We had some issues with aphids and low pH which resulted in a Fe deficiency, but we worked to diagnose the problem and ended up with some beautiful plants," says Ken Spencer, Horticulture program head.



TCC's mums are ready on schedule despite cloudy weather and Hurricane Sandy. "The cuttings we received for the mums were not the best, but you can't tell that now," adds Spencer. "Our students did a great job of working with the plants and disbudding them, and we have a fine crop."


The plants, on sale from the horticulture department, will grace tables and front porches over the Thanksgiving holiday.

"It is always a learning process, working with plants," Spencer says. "Things don't always go as planned and that reflects the realities of horticulture work."

Editor's note: Students have also been at work growing poinsettias for the winter holidays. Look for more information of these beauties soon.