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Public Invited to MCCC Horticulture Expo March 14-16;
NJ High School Students to Participate

3/4/14


West Windsor, N.J. -- Central New Jersey has its very own flower show. Now in its third year at Mercer County Community College (MCCC), the MCCC Horticulture Program and the New Jersey Department of Agriculture will team up to host the New Jersey High School Horticulture Expo Friday, March 14 to Sunday, March 16.

The public is welcome to visit this free show. Suggested viewing hours are: Saturday, March 15, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sunday, March 16, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.  Exhibits will be displayed on the 2nd Floor Skywalk surrounding the quad on the West Windsor Campus, 1200 Old Trenton Road.

According to Associate Professor Amy Ricco, coordinator of the MCCC Horticulture Program, more than 500 high school students from 30 schools will participate, including representatives of the FFA Student Leadership Organization.  Students come from schools that offer horticulture and agriculture programs.

Judging of all entries will be take place on March 14.  Students will be judged in 30 categories including a live floral design competition on Friday morning.  Other categories include house plants, terrariums, dish gardens, bedding plants grown from seed, and themed floral arrangements such as wedding and congratulatory bouquets.  The prizes will include Best in Division and Best in Show. 

Ricco says the event continues to generate a lot of excitement.  “We are looking forward to giving these students a chance to display their work and to interact with students from other schools who share their interest in the field.”

Ricco adds that as one of only four community colleges in the state that offers Horticulture and Plant Science degree programs, MCCC is the ideal location for the Expo.

According to Ricco, job prospects for those with an associate degree in Horticulture/ Plant Science are strong.  “There are openings in a variety of settings, including greenhouse production, golf course management, nursery production, landscape design, and sports turf management.  She notes that the growing interest in organic, community and cooperative gardening has further bolstered the field.

For more information, contact Amy Ricco at riccoa@mccc.edu.

Ornamental Horticulture/Plant Science

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The 2013 live floral competition.
FFA member Catherina Cincotta with her entry in last year's show.
Kiana Harris's 2013 entry featured a Mardi Gras theme.