Master Gardener Training
What really sets a Master Gardener apart from other home gardeners is their special training in horticulture. In exchange for their training, individuals who become Master Gardeners volunteer their time, working through their cooperative Extension office, to provide horticultural-related information to their communities.
Master Gardeners are members of the local community who take an active interest in their lawns, trees, shrubs, flowers and gardens. They are enthusiastic, willing to learn and to help others, and able to communicate with diverse groups of people.
IS THE MASTER GARDENER PROGRAM FOR ME?
To help you decide if you should apply to be a Master Gardener, ask yourself these questions:
- Do I want to learn more about the culture and maintenance of many types of plants?
- Am I eager to participate in a practical and intense training program?
- Do I look forward to sharing my knowledge with people in my community?
- Do I have enough time to attend and complete the training program, and to complete the volunteer service?
If you are a Collin County resident and answered yes to these questions, this program could be for you.
If accepted into the Master Gardener program, you will attend a 12-week Master Gardener training course. Classes are taught by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service specialists, staff, and local experts.
The Collin County program offers a minimum of 65 hours of instruction following Earth-Kind® practices of landscape management covering soil and plant nutrition; insect, disease, and weed management; trees; vegetable and herb gardening; lawn care; plant selection; composting; and water conservation. We also may offer field trips that support the classroom training.
WHEN IS TRAINING OFFERED?
Training is offered once a year in August. There is one Orientation session followed by 12 classes that typically wrap up in November. Typically, classes meet once a week on Tuesdays from 8:30am to 4pm. Attendance at all class sessions is strongly recommended. The cost of the training program is $250.
In exchange for training, Collin County participants are asked to volunteer time to their local Extension program.
In addition to the training classes, Master Gardener Interns must complete 65 hours of volunteer service by December 31 of the year following classroom training to become a Texas Master Gardener. Of these 65 hours, Interns will be required to volunteer at least 8 hours at Myers Park and 8 hours in the Information Center.
HOW WILL I GET VOLUNTEER HOURS?
The type of service done by Master Gardeners varies according to community needs, and the abilities and interests of the Master Gardeners. Our current volunteer projects include our annual Garden Show, Spring Plant Sale, and Fall Bulb and Perennial Mart. We maintain several community gardens throughout Collin County as well as the research and demonstration gardens at Myers Park. We also serve our community through our Youth Education, Horticulture Therapy, and Speakers Bureau presentations.
Collin County Master Gardeners are representatives of the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service. In all volunteer work related to the program, Master Gardeners follow the research-based recommendations of the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, and utilize Earth-Kind® principles.
Participants become certified Texas Master Gardeners one year after they have completed the training course and during that year they must also fulfill their volunteer commitment.
In order to retain the certification, Master Gardeners must volunteer at least 25 hours and attend 6 hours of re-certification education.
The title "Texas Master Gardener" can be used by volunteers only when engaged in Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service-sponsored activities.
Registration is Open for 2021!
For 2021 the Collin County Master Gardener Training will consist of 12 classes, each Tuesday from August 24, 2021 through November 9, 2021. Each class will start at 8:30 a.m. and will last until 4:00 p.m. with one hour for lunch.
Orientation Day is scheduled for Tuesday, August 17. There will be 65 hours of training provided to you during this training program. The cost of the training program is $250.Registration
Special circumstances due to Corona 19 Virus
Due to Corona Virus outbreak in 2020, Class Leaders and Texas A&M AgriLife Extension elected to proceed with the Master Gardener Training Class virtually through Zoom online. All twelve classes were held each Tuesday as originally scheduled and all presentations were virtual. Every student was able to adapt to the virtual format, along with CCMGA Leaders, Mentors and Support Team. With proper social distancing and the use of Personal Protective Equipment, we were able to have live and in person field trips during the class. Adjustments, as necessary, were made to the program and the class was a huge success.
At this time, we do not know in which format the 2021 class will be offered, but it will be one of the following:
- In person at The Landing at Myers Park
- Virtual on Zoom
- A hybrid of the two
Please bear with us until we can make the final decision which will be based upon the safety and well-being of our students.
NOTE: The Master Gardener program is an educational and volunteer program offered through the Cooperative Extension Service of the Texas A&M University system. Educational programs of the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service are open to all people without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, genetic information or veteran status. The Texas A&M University System, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the County Commissioners Courts of Texas cooperating. The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service is an equal opportunity program provider. Individuals with a disability needing an accommodation should contact Texas A&M AgriLife Extension at least one week prior to the event. Full refunds are not guaranteed after the registration deadline.
Still Have Questions?
Contact us to request more info or call the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Office at 972-548-4232 (Metro 972-424-1460, x 4232).