Blossoming Gardening Club takes root at WCHS


Photo courtesy of Lily Hong.

Pictured are the winners of the WCHS Gardening Club’s pumpkin carving contest on Oct. 25. The designs pictured from top to bottom are “Monsters Inc.” character Mike Wazowski, a Bulldog paw print and the meme “loss.”

By Olivia Yasharoff, Editor-in-Chief

Good thymes and green thumbs: the new WCHS Gardening Club is planting the seeds for a successful first year. 

The formation of the club stemmed from the co-founders’ appreciation for plants, produce and the environment, but it was not until Feb. 2021, when the new club application deadline neared, that the idea was set in stone.  

“I love the gardening club because I get a chance to lead a group of people and teach them something I am very passionate about,” club officer and WCHS sophomore Bojie Lei said. “We host events most other clubs don’t, and have a unique goal of building a Churchill Garden.”

In their first year as a club, they plan to use their passion for plant care to revive WCHS’s greenhouse and create a butterfly garden. It is a tough task – but the officers’ optimism and dedication to the cause will help them overcome it.

“As of now, the greenhouse is full of dead plants and empty containers. In late winter, we plan on cleaning it up so we can grow produce and flowers there,” club officer and WCHS sophomore Lily Honk said. “Sometime in spring we also plan on planting a butterfly garden on school property to help our endangered pollinators and brighten up students’ days!” 

For now, though, the Gardening Club is thinking outside of the box by creating and selling Thanksgiving centerpieces to fundraise. The inspiration for this fundraiser came from an officer visit with Hoover Middle School science teacher Rehana Ahmed, a fellow plant lover.

“While the Gardening Club was still new, Allison, Bojie and I visited Ms. Ahmed at Hoover… she brought up that she had made Thanksgiving centerpieces in the past to give to her friends and fundraise at school, and suggested that it could be a fun fundraiser for our club to host,” Honk said.

These Thanksgiving centerpieces were on sale until Nov. 12, and were made out of floral foam, carnations, fake flowers, wax candles and other faux-plant decorations. Two options were available: a mug or bowl, $20 and $18 respectively. 

Our goal is to raise enough money for club funds to continue hosting fun meetings and events.” club officer and WCHS sophomore Allison Zhang said. “We also intend to donate about half the money raised to an environmental charity to help our community.”

The Gardening Club proved they are dedicated to raising spirit for other holidays too, by holding a Halloween-themed pumpkin carving contest on Oct. 25, with pumpkin spice muffins, candy and fierce competition.

“The turnout was awesome and everyone thoroughly enjoyed their time watching other teams present their emotional yet humorous speeches about their pumpkins while the officers scored their execution,” Lei said. “We will definitely continue these spirited ideas in the future, as they are really exciting to plan and also really fun for the members.”

For those interested in participating in future spirited club projects, follow @wchsgardening on Instagram. The officers are always looking for fellow gardeners, environmentalists or anyone else interested to join in on their events and meetings. 

The value of the Gardening Club is having a fun, laid back environment where people can relax and gain hands-on experiences,”  Zhang said. “Anyone who has an interest in gardening can come and it’s never too late to join us!”