Become a Penn State Master Gardener

As a Penn State Master Gardener, volunteers commit their time and knowledge to assist Penn State Cooperative Extension in educating groups as well as individuals on proper horticultural practices and environmental stewardship.

Educational workshops offered by the Adams County Master Gardeners throughout the year include the Green Thumb Series, The Rites of Fall, and Gardening for Your Environment. Presenting garden lectures and leading plant clinics are other opportunities we offer for the public to learn about horticultural practices and caring for our environment.

Ag Explorers Day Camp is as week-long camp that is planned and presented by Extension staff and Master Gardeners. This camp is offered to children completing grades 2 - 6 and will take place the week of June 23-27, 2008. This is a wonderful opportunity for children to see agriculture at work and includes hands-on activities that will show them how to care for our environment. For more information about the camp, please contact the Penn State Extension office at 334-6271.

Master Gardeners also plan, plant, maintain and teach from our demonstration and trial gardens which include a native plant garden and now in development, a rain garden. All of these gardens are tools for Extension to not only learn about how plants and insects grow or affect our environment, but it also gives us the opportunity to share that information with the public. These gardens are open to the public throughout the summer and pertinent information concerning our projects, care and results of the projects are available in the information boxes conveniently located in the gardens. Stop by the gardens any time or visit the gardens on scheduled Sunday afternoons for guided tours from the Master Gardeners.

Many people have questions concerning the care of plants, whether in their garden or home. Proper planting, placement and selection of plants become important when growing shrubs, trees or houseplants, as well as being able to identify insect and disease problems. Master Gardeners answer questions by phone or email and help folks identify their plant problems when stopping by the Extension office throughout the growing season on Mondays and Fridays.

This fall Penn State Cooperative Extension will be training a new class to become Master Gardener Volunteers. To become a Master Gardener, one must complete a fourteen week course that covers information on botany, plant propagation, insects and diseases, plant identification, diagnostics, native plants and much more. Upon completion of this fourteen week course, the Master Gardener trainee must dedicate 50 hours of volunteer time to the Master Gardener program throughout the following year. There is a small fee of $85 for the training to cover costs of the manual, handouts that you receive and travel costs of the educators.

Whether you are an avid gardener or a novice, becoming a Penn State Master Gardener Volunteer might be for you. If you wish to learn more about gardening and would like to share your knowledge with others in the community, contact the Extension office to learn more about this program.

The training will take place in Adams County at the Agricultural and Natural Resource Center and in Cumberland County Extension office in Carlisle. For more information or an application packet, contact Penn State Cooperative Extension, Adams County at 717-334-6271 or stop by the Extension office at 670 Old Harrisburg Road, Suite 204, Gettysburg, PA 17325.

Penn State in Adams County is located at 670 Old Harrisburg Road, Gettysburg, PA 17325, phone 334-6271 or 1-888-472-0261. Penn State is committed to affirmative action, equal opportunity, and the diversity of its workforce.