Master Gardener Program

 Smart Gardening Resources 

Master Gardener Program Resources 

The Florida Master Gardeners (MG) are volunteers, trained by and working with the University of Florida IFAS Extension Agents. First, every MG enjoys gardening and uses their experience and skills to teach other gardeners. MGs are gardening teachers working with individuals as well as small groups presenting science-based solutions to plant or pest problems.

Gardeners with home landscapes, vegetable or community garden plots or fruit tree growing experience often apply to become MGs. Once selected, a MG in training attends 15, one-day a week classes. Classes are both indoors and outdoor and include lectures, study exercises, plant identification quizzes and walking tours.  Over 15 weeks, trainees learn hundred of Southwest Florida landscape and edible plants. 

To get started when the next program is available, a brief interview is scheduled after a gardener completes an application form available on-line at Master Gardener application.  20 applicants are selected for each class. 

Note:  In 2016, the MG training class met weekly from 9AM to 3:45PM, August 19th to November 18th at the North Fort Myers Rec Center.  Cost was $180.  The next training class will start TBD.  Applicants are encouraged to contact the Master Gardener Coordinator, Roy Beckford, in advance.  Applicants will be invited to participate with MGs prior to the first training class.  Call 239-533-7513 or email Roy Beckford.

Finally, each trainee agrees to volunteer 75 hours by either speaking, working in a demonstration garden or answering questions from callers to the Horticulture Help Desk. 

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