2024 Extension Master Gardener Course

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Do you love gardening? Do you want to learn more about horticulture? Do you desire to help others? Come join our Extension Master Gardener volunteer program!

Returning in Fall 2024 is the Extension Master Gardener Volunteer course for potential Extension Master Gardener℠ Volunteers in Chowan, Gates and Perquimans counties. This 14-week course will begin on August 26th, 2024 and will continue most Mondays, from 4:00–6:30 p.m. until December 16th, 2024. This course will primarily take place at the N.C. Cooperatove Extension, Chowan County Center, with several field trips and labs that may take place at other area Extension locations.

Interested in taking this course and becoming an Extension Master Gardener Volunteer? Read on below for more details and the application package:

Who is an Extension Master Gardener volunteer?

An Extension Master Gardener volunteer is a volunteer educator who acts as an extension of Cooperative Extension. EMGVs help horticulture agents get research-based horticultural information out into the community through classes, projects, community gardens and services. Our current Master Gardener Volunteers complete volunteer hours through the Boys and Girls Club community garden, working with historical gardens, teaching Junior Master Gardener curriculum to youth, helping the Horticulture agent with community classes, and so much more.

What is the commitment for Extension Master Gardener Volunteers?

Potential volunteers complete the 40-hour training course provided by the horticulture agent. After completion of the course, potential volunteers are considered to be interns. During the 12-month “internship,” volunteers complete 40 hours of volunteer work. Volunteers get to choose the opportunities in which they take part in. There are many volunteer opportunities for Extension Master Gardener volunteers, both during the week, evenings, and on weekends.

What is in it for me, the potential volunteer?

Extension Master Gardener Volunteers have the opportunity to advance their gardening knowledge and skills through the initial training course, advanced training and continuing education through Cooperative Extension. When surveyed, our current Extension Master Gardener Volunteers have shared the following attributes that are their “favorite” parts of volunteering with Extension:

  • “Sharing my gardening knowledge to help others.”
  • “Being new to the area, I am able to learn more about the plants that do well in this region.”
  • “I enjoy being part of a group with similar gardening interests and learning with them.”
  • “Access to academics and advanced training in horticulture”
  • “Making new friends!”

 What is covered in this Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Training course?

In this initial training for the Extension Master Gardener, we cover a variety of topics including soils, plant nutrition, Integrated Pest Management, native plants, landscape design, wildlife, local agriculture, plant diseases and diagnostics and much more.

Do I need any prior gardening experience to take this course?

Nope! Just an interest in gardening, a desire to learn and the desire to help others learn about horticulture.

What is the cost for this course?

There are two different options for this course;

  • $150 for the course, Master Gardener Volunteer state fee, materials and textbook. 
  • $85 for the course, Master Gardener Volunteer state fee, materials and NO textbook. (The textbook is available online for free if you would prefer to not have a physical copy.)

How can I apply?

The application for this course and program can be found here. CGP_EMG_Application-2024

After completion of the application, please send it to:

N.C. Cooperative Extension, Chowan County Center, 730 N Granville St. Edenton, NC 27932

You may also email your completed application to keluton@ncsu.edu.

After receiving your application, the horticulture agent will give you a call for a brief phone interview and to give you a few more details about the program.

If you have any questions about the Extension Master Gardener Volunteer program, this course or horticultural education, please contact Kellie Binnicker at 252-482-6585 or keluton@ncsu.edu