The National Junior Horticultural Association (NJHA - www.njha.org) was founded in 1934 and was the first organization in the world dedicated solely to youth and horticulture. NJHA programs are designed to help young people obtain a basic understanding of, and develop skills in the ever expanding art and science of horticulture. These programs help the horticultural industry by training and recruiting youth in many specialized fields of horticulture. NJHA also develops citizen appreciation for the understanding of the industry by placing emphasis on positive programs for building producer-consumer understanding.
NJHA has a yearly convention held in the US. During this convention, one can participate in various competitions including: Photography (several categories), horticulture competition (a combination of Judging and Identifying plants given plant specimens and testing of basic horticultural knowledge), speech, extemporaneous speech, demonstration, experimental horticulture, and others (see http://www.njha.org/projects.htm). In preparing and participating in these competitions, one not only gains valuable experience in the field of horticulture, but in doing demonstrations, speeches, photography, etc. (plus there's the cash prizes if you win [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif[/img] )
During the convention we also go on field trips. Last year, I attended the convention in St. Louis. We toured the famed St. Louis Botanical Gardens (quite spectacular! ) and the Monsanto Research facility. We also had a little cruise on the Mississippi [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/smile.gif[/img]. These were awesome opportunities for me, not only because I got to see gardens in a different climate than mine, but because both field trips were plain old worth going to for the educational and life experience!
This year's convention is going to be in Raleigh, NC. If any of you 15 - 22 yr. olds like horticulture, you should come to the convention this fall (Nov. 7-11). You could, for example, do a demo on growing carnivorous plants, submit some cp pictures to the photography competition, and test your general horticultural knowledge at the horticulture competition (in this one you are given plant specimens as obscure as Ivy seeds or Papaya leaves and asked to identify the plant - quite a challenge but lots of fun! )
We will be going on various field trips, including to a winery and the NC botanical gardens, which features a cp display!
If you are interested or have more questions, please contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Let's see some more cp'ers at Raleigh this fall!