Growing Strong: West Valley’s Spring Planting Night

By Avi Vieira

Though temperatures are creeping into the triple digits here in the Valley Of The Sun, in other parts of the country May typically signifies the beginning of spring weather and activities. With spring comes a new beginning as flowers and trees burst into a virtual rainbow of blossoms of all shades. West Valley one•n•ten took the opportunity to celebrate by planting seeds of its own with a Spring Planting Night.


Youth were given flower pots, potting soil, and a mix of flower seeds to create their own mini flower garden as their own symbol of spring rebirth. Encouraged to decorate their pots with stickers, ribbon, glitter, and paint before planting a mix of flower seeds that will not only look beautiful, but attract butterflies and hummingbirds. The youth  were then given the challenge to keep their flowers alive and document it through pictures as they will compete who can keep their plants alive the longest, and will be judged at the end of summer by our staff and volunteers.  It made for a fun way to celebrate springtime and warmer weather with an activity that encouraged creativity in the present sense, and nurturing qualities in the longer term as the youth care for their plants and watch them grow and thrive – not altogether different from what one•n•ten volunteers and staff do with our LGBTQ youth every day.


The rest of the evening was devoted to social time for the group, because what better excuse than springtime to simply relax and socialize as spring fever hits, even if you live in AZ where winter means wearing a hoodie? It kept the mood light, fun, and positive for everyone as we had our own celebration and even got our hands a little dirty in the process.