The University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Horticulture Club held its annual Valentine’s Day succulent sale yesterday at the Nebraska and Nebraska East Unions to fundraise for future group activities and promote student involvement.

Nestled in the center of the Nebraska Union was the Horticulture Club booth, whose members sold succulents to passersby. Rows of succulents in individual pots were laid out across the booth. A few of the plants had leaves that nearly extended to the floor, and some had white flowers blossoming, but a majority were the traditional green leaves that don’t require much care. Club members were explaining the proper care of the plants to interested students and faculty: simply water the plant every two weeks, and it will thrive.

Group activities like fundraising events are opportunities for club members to become closer and share their love for horticulture, the management of gardens and plants. Other meetings are spent learning more about the plants around them and working together.

This is the first year that junior Elaina Madison is president of the club, but she said she is excited to be leading the group in their fundraising event. In past years, the sales have paid for activities such as a day trip to Lauritzen Gardens in Omaha. This sale will give the club their final push for their trip to Hawaii over spring break.

“The trips are really fun because you get to know people better and just meet people with similar interests,” said Madison. “But we do fun nature and plant-related activities like painting pumpkins and doing little succulent planters.”

Madison is a plant and landscape systems major and says she sees people of all majors joining the club.

“It's essentially a group of people, and we come together because we love plants,” Madison said.

Club member Sydney Arps, a sophomore horticulture major, said the only goal isn’t fundraising, though. 

“I think what we’re really trying to gain from the sale is to spread our love for plants,” said Arps. “It’s cheesy, but…we all love plants and the students are amazing.”

Seff Cleaver, a member of the club and a senior horticulture major, said the most exciting club meetings are the ones where the group is doing the hands-on work that goes into preparing for sales like these.

“We had all these plants a few weeks ago, and it’s just fun to get your hands dirty and do some work,” Cleaver said.

Arps agreed that selling plants is one of the most engaging and exciting parts of being a member of the Horticulture Club.

“The days when we go and we pot the plants, it's so fun to be in the greenhouse and be able to work with the plants,” Arps said. “And it’s fun to sell the plants and be able to see people and see people's faces light up when they see the plants.”

All members of the club encourage students of any major to join.

“Everyone in horticulture club is super welcoming and open and funny,” Arps said. “It's a great club to be a part of, and I feel like if you want to join, just go for it.”

This sale is one of four that the club puts on throughout the school year. The club hosts a foliage sale in the fall, followed by a poinsettia sale around Christmas. Their final sale will be closer to the end of the semester to sell spring bedding.