AC horticulture program showcases green-thumbed students

Greenhouse hosts farmers market in May

By Elvia Ortiz 

Student Reporter

Amarillo College Horticulture students recently finished up a four-week study over radishes in the AC STEM Research Center, or greenhouse.  

They learned how not having specific nutrient deficiencies can affect the health of radishes by the coloring of edges, roots and reproduction. 

Faculty Program Coordinator, Teresa Gaus-Bowling, said that students in this program get more hands-on experience compared to other surrounding universities.

“Students need to be able to touch things and feel it and if you don’t have the space to do that, students are getting the short end of the stick,” Gaus-Bowling said. “Looking at a picture you’re not getting that, because it doesn’t look that different.” 

The greenhouse has allowed students to network with other people from different fields or majors, be a part of research experiments and even grow their own vegetables, fruits, plants, flowers and succulents.

“I get to work with plants and it’s something I love to do already,” Marcus Baber-Newton, a horticulture major, said. “Right now, I have some Siam Queen Basil, which is used in Asian-fusion dishes; Thai peppers that are good for curries;  marigold tomatoes that I like to slice up and put some in pho or on a sandwich and then two varieties of roses that I’m germinating,” Barber-Newton, said.

AC students get the opportunity to care for and enter the greenhouse facility at any time to ensure what they have growing is being given the correct amount of water, light or nutrients. 

“There are a lot of signs. You can either see it depending on the life cycle of a plant, looking at leaves, stems to see if they are weathered or you’ll see the discoloration in the leaves. It’s all depending on what’s happening to the plant,” Baber-Newton said. 

Next month, AC students will get to showcase their own produce at a farmer’s market at 9 a.m. on May 3. 

Students and faculty are invited to come and shop all the produce grown in the greenhouse this semester.

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