Lyle Irwin has always given to the Truman Heritage Habitat for Humanity. The only difference beginning today is that he’s doing it with mums.

Lyle Irwin has always given to the Truman Heritage Habitat for Humanity. The only difference beginning today is that he’s doing it with mums.
Irwin, owner of Colonial Nursery in Blue Springs, will begin selling at 8 a.m. today as many as 900 hardy garden mums for $3 each – with all proceeds going to the Truman Habitat for Humanity. The benefit lasts through Sunday afternoon.
The $3 price is $4 off what Irwin typically charges.
But it’s for a cause that he’s been familiar with for a long time.
“I’ve given monetary donations before, and I’ve helped build homes, one of which is in Grain Valley,” Irwin said Thursday, preparing for what he expects to be a significant reception. “I have never done anything with flowers, though.”
Chances are, however, that Truman Heritage will find something to do with the money raised from selling those flowers.
“These flower sales will help us build more homes for needy families that are struggling to make ends meet,” Gina Elkins, executive director for the Truman Heritage Habitat for Humanity, said. “Most of all these flowers will help children.”
Elkins continued:
“In some parts of our county, like Independence, 26.8 percent of children live in poverty – that’s one in four. Lyle’s generous offer is going to help bring some of those kids a home.”
The sale will be held from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. today and Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.
“We’re expecting a pretty good reception,” Irwin said. “There’s a special section in the greenhouse for the plants. People are already asking.”
The hardy garden mum is a popular flower for autumn. Usually placed by pumpkins and straw during Halloween, they can later be planted. They’ll return in spring.
The idea to donate proceeds from garden mum sales wasn’t all Irwin’s idea. Blue Springs Council members Jeanie Lauer and Sissy Reed were talking to Irwin and suggested that he sell them and donate the money.
“So we got a dialogue going with the organization and set it up,”
A long time supporter of Habitat for Humanity, Irwin said it’s important to give back to the community.
“This is one way I can help out,” he said. “It is a wonderful way to clear the shelves of the nursery and a great way help a worthy cause.”
Good time, too; the economy has left many in difficult financial situations. And yet over the years, Truman Heritage Habitat for Humanity hasn’t waited for a recession; it has built more than 55 homes in the community and partners with churches, businesses, community groups and local government.
Since its inception, the organization has built more than 300,000 worldwide, providing more than 1.5 million people with affordable shelter.
Colonial Nursery is located at 27610 E. Wyatt Road in Blue Springs. For information call 229-1277.