ALACHUA COUNTY, FL - The UF/IFAS Alachua County Master Gardener Volunteer Program is recruiting individuals who are interested in gardening and enjoy sharing what they learn with others. Participants complete a 54 hour training course sponsored by the University of Florida and the local county Extension office. Interested applicants should contact the Alachua County Extension Office. The application deadline is July 19, 2012. In return for their training, these new Master Gardeners serve 75 volunteer hours within the first year of their certification, per the statewide program bylaws.
Certified Master Gardeners work through their county Extension office to educate citizens and provide research-based information about gardening. Master Gardeners can fulfill their volunteer hours in a variety of ways, including:
- Answering horticultural questions over the phone or in person at plant clinics and exhibits
- Participating in community and school garden projects
- Giving educational programs to the public
- Supporting youth activities
- Extend practical applications of IFAS-based research on gardening in Florida
- Certifying Florida-Friendly yards through the Florida Yards & Neighborhoods Program
Master Gardener Program certification training begins September 2. This training includes classroom lectures and group activities, field trips and site visits. Subjects include basic plant science, soils, fertilizers, vegetables, entomology, citrus, turf grasses, use of (and alternatives to) chemicals, house plants, ornamentals, diseases and related topics. Participants will take weekly quizzes and a final exam, and receive pesticide training. The cost of the training is $120.00 and includes study/reference materials.
To maintain certification a Master Gardener must commit to a minimum of 75 volunteer hours the first year and 35 hours in following years, and complete at least 10 hours of continuing education/training per year.
To receive an application packet call the Alachua County Extension office at 352-955-2402.
For more information visit the Alachua County Extension Office and/or Florida Master Gardener Web Sites (or here):
The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) is an Equal Opportunity Institution authorized to provide research, educational information, and other services only to individuals and institutions that function with non-discrimination with respect to race, creed, color, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, political opinions, or affiliations. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Cooperative Extension Service, University of Florida, IFAS, Florida A&M University Cooperative Extension Program, and Boards of County Commissioners Cooperating.
Persons with disabilities needing special accommodations should contact the Extension Office at least 10 working days prior to the event so that special consideration can be given to the request.