How to become a Master
Is the UConn Master Gardener program for you?
To help you decide if you should apply for UConn Master Gardener training, ask yourself these important questions:
- Do I look forward to sharing my knowledge with people in the community?
- Do I have enough time to attend the 16 week training and to complete my 60 hours of volunteer work?
- Am I eager to participate in the practical and intensive training program?
- Do I want to learn more about plant care and gardening?
To become a Certified Master Gardener you must complete a 16-week course that meets once a week from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM, starting in January and running through April.
Students enrolled in this program receive training in botany, plant pathology, soils, entomology, pesticide safety, integrated pest management (IPM), woody ornamentals, herbaceous ornamentals, vegetables, tree and small fruits, turf grass, invasive plants, weeds, water quality, environmental factors affecting plant growth, and diagnostic techniques for the home gardener.
Following formal classroom instruction the Master Gardener student completes a 60-hour internship program. Thirty hours are dedicated to hands-on training in the extension offices where students are supervised in researching and determining the answers to a broad range of horticultural questions, including insect and plant identification, diagnosing plant diseases and providing sound horticultural recommendations. Students devote the remaining thirty hours to organized community outreach projects. Internships include plant clinics, educational displays at local, county fairs and farmers’ markets, presenting educational lectures, and working in demonstration gardens.
Upon completion of the program you will receive a certificate and name badge designating you as a University of Connecticut certified Master Gardener.
UCONN Master Gardeners are registered volunteers with the University of Connecticut Cooperative Extension. As such they are covered by the university’s liability insurance. In all volunteer work related to the program, Master Gardeners must follow the recommendations of the University of Connecticut Cooperative Extension.
Once you have become certified, you are eligible to attend training programs and workshops to work toward obtaining Advanced Certification.
You will also qualify to join the Connecticut Master Gardener Association (CMGA).
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