After a year of no activity because of the pandemic, the Wheatland Community Garden needed some work.

Armed with 10,000 seeds and 10 varieties of flowers, student Ella Proud, 14, who will be a freshman at McCaskey High School in fall, and about 30 of her fellow Junior National Honor Society classmates at Wheatland Middle School set out to transform an overgrown area of weeds into a beautiful field of sunflowers.

In February, special education teacher and honor society adviser Kevin Ghaffari asked the students what they wanted to do with the garden this year. Because it was filled with weeds, Ella, then an eighth-grader at Wheatland, came up with the idea for sunflowers — they are hearty and can survive alongside anything.

The plan is to eventually develop the space for outdoor learning, so the students would have somewhere to learn about science and growing things, Ghaffari said.

Several months later, the school now has a field of more than 1,000 blooming sunflowers reaching for the sky.

Sunflowers aren’t around for long. Teachers, advisers and students will be selling the flowers 6-8 p.m. Wednesdays and Fridays through Sundays at the garden for the next two weeks or until the flowers are gone.

Flowers cost $2 for one or $10 for six. All proceeds go back into the garden.

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