Friday, June 10, 2011

Plant Your Own Flower Week May Become a Perennial Event

ECBC Facility Coordinator Juanita Hubbard plants
calla lilies as part of the "Plant Your Own Flower"
week she helped coordinate.
 Staff from the U.S. Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Center Research and Technology Directorate (R&T) found a fun way to "go green," save money and put a smile on visitors' faces. What's the secret? We created "Plant Your Own Flower" week in May, and our staff brought in spring blooms to express their personalities and spruce up our flower beds.
Nearly 30 R&T staff participated in Plant Your Own Flower Week, according to Facilities Coordinator Juanita Hubbard, who helped develop the event. Staff members from the Bernard P. McNamara Life Sciences Laboratory pitched in to weed, water, spread mulch, apply deer repellent, and plant a range of colorful blossoms, from calla lilies to impatiens to delphiniums to salvia. Those who don’t have a green thumb or weren’t able to make a special trip to a nursery contributed a few dollars to the cause.
Hubbard, who spends most of her time submitting service orders, maintaining common areas, escorting visitors, and troubleshooting, enjoyed the time outdoors. “In addition to enhancing the landscaping, the project enhanced the spirit of the employees in McNamara,” she said. “It promoted unity because we were working together for a common cause.”
“I think that this project gives us (the building occupants) a sense of ownership and pride in our building,” said Biological Research Laboratory Technician Leslie Williams. “It also gives us a break from our desks to go out and enjoy the sunshine.”
“I brought in purple wave petunias.  I don't have much of a green thumb, but I love beautiful landscaping.  The more participants there are, the more beautiful the landscaping will be,” said R&T Committee Coordinator Melanie Pender. “Every morning I smile to myself when I see my purple petunias.  I appreciate all the hard work that Juanita Hubbard has put into beautifying the entrance to our building, and I hope more building occupants will bring in flowers. If this becomes an annual event, I'll gladly participate each year.”
“Flower week was a very therapeutic experience because it allowed me to commune with the Earth by tending to what God gave us to enjoy,” said R&T Project Support Assistant Peggy Furlong. “Our day-to-day routine can be tedious, but now I can come to work and can see the creativity that went into the beautification effort.  It shows the pride for this building and for those who work in it.  There are a lot of green thumbs!” 

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