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Planting grows into learning experience

THE TRIBUNE/JESSICA ST JAMES (ABOVE) Students J.T. Jones, left, and Tyler Brown, right, work with Open Door School faculty member Curt Brady, center, as they plant flowers in pots as part of an Arbor Day project.

THE TRIBUNE/JESSICA ST JAMES
(ABOVE) Students J.T. Jones, left, and Tyler Brown, right, work with Open Door School faculty member Curt Brady, center, as they plant flowers in pots as part of an Arbor Day project.

On Earth Day last month, thousands of trees and millions of flowers were planted across the country in an effort to help preserve the planet’s natural beauty.

Add a few dozen more flowers and one more tree to the list of Earth Day goodwill plantings. On Thursday students from Open Door School planted flowers and a flowering pear tree on the school’s campus as part of an annual effort to help better the environment.

“This is the fourth year we’ve done this,” Stephanie Helms, community outreach coordinator for the Lawrence Scioto Solid Waste Management District, said. “The event really starts in April with a recycling contest between the classes. The planting is really kind of the finale of a month long focus on the environment.”

The planting was originally scheduled for Earth Day on April 22, but severe thunderstorms forced the school and the LSSWMD to reschedule.

“Better late than never,” Helms said. “We couldn’t have asked for better weather than we got today. Rain and stuff forced us to hold off for a few weeks. Today is beautiful though.”

The flowers and the tree will be planted on the school’s premises to help spruce up the grounds, while also serving as an environmental lesson to Open Door’s students.

“The kids will plant them around the school property,” Tim Nunnery, from the Lawrence County Board of Developmental Disabilities, said. “It just helps make the school look a little more alive for the spring time and the kids love to get out and help with the planting. Plus they’re learning the whole time.”

The flowers and the tree for the event were donated by Lowe’s in South Point.