With Mother’s Day at its earliest possible date this year on May 8, the Westfield Technical Academy Plant Sale will open its doors on Tuesday, May 3, to offer annuals, flowering hanging plants, and herbal arrangements grown by students for the occasion.
Although hours are scheduled from May 3 to May 7, the plant sale, which raises money for the school’s horticulture technology shop and is located at the shop’s entrance on Greylock Street, has in the past sold out on the first day, so organizers recommend shoppers to try to arrive early in the week.
Hours are 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday of next week; 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday; 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday; and 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, or until sold out.
“We’ve been selling out quicker each year. We’ve really enjoyed the community support with respect to our plant sale, and we trust the community appreciates the plants the students grow. We get good feedback that the plants perform well, which is encouraging,” said horticulture tech lead instructor Nathan Sperry.
New this year are coral bells and echinacea, due to customer requests for perennials.
“Next year, we’ll add some more,” Sperry said.
Sperry said ninth and 10th graders primarily work on the plant sale with instructor Vicki Toro, who he said has been doing a really good job with it.
“They’ve been working real hard out in the greenhouse getting to know some of the plants, how to grow them, and what kind of conditions they like — and how to identify pests, that’s important.”
He said the overall horticulture curriculum keeps freshmen and sophomores on campus learning landscaping, landscape operations and greenhouse work. Upperclassmen spend more time off campus with Sperry using equipment and learning about arboriculture and landscape design and construction.
Also for sale next week will be tomatoes, peppers, squashes, cucumbers, herb bowls and coleus — while supplies last.