EDUCATION Become a Master Gardener
The Master Gardener Program welcomes enthusiastic gardeners with a willingness to share their interest and experience with the public. To become a Master Gardener you must take the Master Gardener Basic Training Program offered through a Master Gardener Chapter or an associated Educational Institution offering the Master Gardener Basic Training program.
Please do take some time to read our summary to answer some of your possible questions.
The Basic Training program is divided into two components:
Classroom – Theory
The classroom training provides an overview of gardening basics. Topics include botany, soils, composting, perennials and annuals, berries, vegetables, plant propagation, and responsible control of weeds and pests. Environmentally responsible gardening practices are emphasized and experts on each topic teach the courses. Students must complete assignments, homework, and pass a final exam before proceeding on to the second component of the training.
With its emphasis on volunteer participation, preparation for face-to-face education of the general public and appreciation of local horticultural issues, the Basic Training Program does not lend itself to on-line learning. Significant components of the course are local speakers and content, in-class Mentorship, hands-on experience and field trips that require personal interaction. For these reasons the recognized MGABC programs currently offered in BC are delivered in person.
Master Gardener in Training – Volunteer Service
Students’ volunteer hours are completed over an 18 month to two year period. Hours can be completed in a variety of ways including providing gardening advice to the public at nurseries and garden centres; participating in community projects; answering plant information hotlines; and participating in writers’ and speakers’ groups. Once students have successfully completed both the Classroom and the Volunteer Service components of the Program, they will earn their Master Gardener Certificate.
After the Training
Master Gardeners remain active in the program, and are certified annually, by completing at least 15 hours of volunteer service each year, plus 5 hours of continuing gardening education. Continuing education hours can be accumulated by attending the speaker portion of Chapter meetings, field trips, the Vancouver Chapter sponsored Spring Seminar or other Chapter Education events; an Advanced MG Training Program; or other approved workshops and horticultural courses.
To find and apply for the Master Gardener Basic Training Program in your area/community,
choose one of the following:
Prince George http://www.mgabc.org/content/prince-george
Thompson Shuswap http://www.mgabc.org/content/thompson-shuswap
Vancouver Island (VIMGA) http://www.mgabc.org/content/vancouver-island-vimga
Advanced Training Electives are available for those Master Gardeners who have completed their Advanced Training Core Program.
Please click on the PDF document below to find eligibility information for the Advanced Training Program.