Cuyamaca College shows off its new ornamental horticulture complex

Cuyamaca College’s ornamental horticulture program now has building and classroom upgrades worthy of the study of applied natural science that is focused on growing and caring for plants. Last week, the Rancho San Diego school officially heralded the completion and opening of its expanded ornamental horticulture complex, marking a new chapter for one of the flagship programs on campus.

The $19.4 million project renovated indoor and outdoor classrooms and facilities doubled the square footage of building spaces and added a greenhouse. A separate building housing the nursery’s retail shop, along with office and meeting rooms was also added. With the renovation, students have updated facilities and upgraded technology, including pan/tilt/zoom camera systems and dozens of large video screens throughout the complex.

The project included the gutting and renovating of the school’s Building M to accommodate a design lab and a lab prep room on one end and a large classroom on the other. Other key additions include a storage facility and a cooler large enough to store flowers and delicate arrangements created in the floral design program.

That’s great news for instructors like Diane Citrowske, who has been teaching floral design classes at Cuyamaca since 2002. “The renovation and new construction have been a long time coming, but well worth the wait,” Citrowske said. “One of the most impressive additions for me is a temperature/humidity-controlled expansive walk-in floral cooler for our fresh flowers and foliage.”

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