The University of California Cooperative Extension (UCCE) invites adults interested in helping others learn about gardening and landscaping to apply to train as a Master Gardener volunteer. UCCE Master Gardener volunteers learn University-based scientific information and then share that knowledge with the gardening community. Master Gardener volunteers are people of all ages and from all walks of life with a common desire to help others learn about gardening and landscaping.
Who Can Apply?
- Any resident of El Dorado or Amador County. Most communication will be by email and through websites. You do not need internet access to be a Master Gardener, but you do need to be comfortable using a computer for research while working in the Master Gardener Office.
How to Apply
- Sign up on our MG Training interest list at http://ucanr.org/edmg2012.
- Attend one of our two Master Gardener orientation meetings to learn about the Master Gardener Program, our community involvement, and your participation requirements. These meetings are scheduled for Monday, October 10 and 17, from 1-2:30pm.
- Complete the online application. If you don’t have computer access, stop by our office to complete the application using one of our computers or request a paper version. Submit the application by Friday, October 21, 2011.
What We’ll Do
- Review applicants. Main criteria for acceptance: 1) prior community service, 2) experience teaching, either by giving presentations, writing, or in one-to-one situations, 3) passion for helping home gardeners, 4) experience successfully gardening.
- Conduct interviews during November. We will contact you in early December about whether or not you have been accepted into the program.
- If you are accepted, we will email you a Live Scan form and list of Live Scan locations. A background check, including fingerprinting, is required to become a Master Gardener. We will also offer a Live Scan session at the El Dorado UCCE office the first week of January.
- Teach you how to garden successfully. Topics and activities will cover basic plant science, propagation, fertilization, irrigation, soil, compost, vegetable and fruit gardening, trees, Integrated Pest Management (diseases, weeds, insects, small animals), research tools, and outreach techniques.
- Provide you with plenty of Volunteer and Continuing Education opportunities.
What You’ll Do If Accepted into the Master Gardener Volunteer Training Program
- By December 28, 2011, pay course fee online or mail a check for $185 made payable to “UC Regents” to Robin Cleveland, UC Cooperative Extension, 311 Fair Lane, Placerville, CA 95667.
- By January 4, 2012, mail the Live Scan form completed by the Live Scan operator to Robin Cleveland at the above address.
- Attend 16 classes on Mondays, January 9 through May 7, 2012, from 1-5 pm in Placerville. Some additional classes and field trips will occur one Monday morning and on several Saturdays. (Schedule to be announced at the orientation meeting.) Only one class may be missed.
- Answer gardening questions at farmers’ markets, at the county fair and other local events, at the Master Gardener office, at the upcoming Master Gardener Demonstration Garden, or at public classes. Help with program activities offered through a variety of internal committees.
- Complete 50 volunteer and 12 continuing education hours your first year, then 25 volunteer and 12 continuing education hours annually.
- Post your volunteer and continuing education hours on our online Statewide MG Volunteer Management System (we provide instructions).
- Attend monthly MG Continuing Education meetings as often as possible.
What You’ll Get
- Five University of California publications including the California Master Gardener Handbook; discounts on other UC publications.
- Certificate of Completion of Class Instruction after completing the 16-week training program and passing the take-home, open-book examination.
- Monthly Continuing Education meetings with speakers and activities on in-depth gardening topics.
- Frequent emails of Volunteer and Continuing Education opportunities and other program information.
- Annual recertification as an active MG after you post online at least 50 Volunteer hours and 12 Continuing Education hours by May 7, 2013. (Future years’ annual requirements are 25 Volunteer and 12 Continuing Education hours.)
- Joy and satisfaction that you’re helping other gardeners grow more nutritious vegetables and fruits, you’re making new friends, and working with others to help create a more sustainable environment.
For more information, contact Robin Cleveland at 530-621-5543 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The University of California Division of Agriculture & Natural Resources (ANR) prohibits discrimination or harassment of any person in any of its programs or activities. (Complete nondiscrimination policy statement can be found at http://ucanr.org/sites/anrstaff/files/107734.doc.) Inquiries regarding ANR’s equal employment opportunity policies may be directed to Linda Marie Manton, Affirmative Action Contact, University of California, Davis, Agriculture and Natural Resources, One Shields Avenue, Davis, CA 95616, (530) 752-0495.