By ANGIE CARNATHAN
Those still looking for ways to spruce up their homes for the holidays have two great opportunities coming up at Mississippi State University.
The MSU Horticulture Club is holding its annual holiday plant sale Friday from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Varieties of poinsettias and novelty plants can be purchased at the campus greenhouses located behind Dorman Hall on Stone Boulevard. Supplies are limited, and organizers say they encourage people to come early in order to guarantee the best selection. According to a release, proceeds from the sale support the club’s service projects and educational activities. For more information, call the MSU Plant and Soil Science Department’s office at 662-325-2311.
Also on Friday, the MSU student chapter of the American Institute of Floral Designers will be available at The University Florist’s holiday open house from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m.
Lynette McDougald, an instructor of floral management and manager of The University Florist, said this is her 14th year of participating in the Christmas open house.
According to a release, holiday decorations, including live wreaths and garlands made by the student chapter of the American Institute of Floral Designers, will be available for purchase. In addition, McDougald is leading a holiday design program focused on making holiday décor with materials from Mississippi’s backyards and byways.
“The demonstration will take place at the Chapel of Memories on Friday at 11 a.m. and will last about an hour,” McDougald said. “We hope the community will come and join us.”
McDougald said she’ll doing a presentation on working with collected materials, such as things that grow naturally in the area.
“People tend to like these demonstrations because it gives them ideas on how to use materials from their own yards to decorate their homes,” McDougald said. “Items such as greenery, branches, berries, cones, pods –– there are a lot of different and creative ways that all of those things can be used. So I’ll be showing different materials people can use as well as the mechanics on how to put it together.”
McDougald said she was influenced to use collected materials by her mother and grandmother.
“That was always how they decorated when I was a child,” McDougald said. “But I also like to keep up with today’s trends and even what sorts of trends to watch for in the future.”
McDougald said she hopes for a great turnout, but the Mississippi Extension Center will be showing a live video of the demonstration at each of the county offices, so people who can’t make it can go to their county extension service office. It will be completely interactive and will feature a Q&A session.
“All of our wreaths this year will be made completely with materials from magnolia trees,” McDougald said.
Brittany Tate, a junior in floral design from Madison, said designers have been preparing for weeks for the Christmas open house.
Kate Huseman of Natchez, also a junior floral design major, said she enjoys showing all of the holiday materials that the students have been working on during Christmas open house.
“We just enjoy getting a lot of new people in the store,” Huseman said. “Open house always brings a lot of foot traffic through the store.”
Huseman said the MSU student chapter of the American Institute of Floral Designers is also hosting a raffle the day of the Christmas open house.
“We are raffling off a piece of McCarty pottery called the ‘Black Eyed Pea.’ It’s a very collectable piece, and tickets are $5 apiece,” Huseman said. “You can buy tickets now at the University Florist and tickets will also be available on Friday. You do not have to be present to win.”
To sign up for the program or to reserve a wreath or garland for purchase, contact McDougald at 662-325-3585 or firstname.lastname@example.org.