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The Master Gardeners of Hamilton County, Tennessee

What is the Master Gardener program?

The Hamilton County Master Gardener (MG) program is an educational program in which trained volunteers share the latest gardening and horticultural information with the public through volunteer community service.  The Master Gardener program is affiliated with the UT Extension office.

What is the purpose of this program?

Master Gardener program provides volunteer leadership and service through gardening and horticultural projects.  MGs strive to increase the availability of gardening information throughout the community in order to improve the quality of life.

Activities include: developing and conducting educational programs and activities related to gardening and nature; sponsoring clinics; writing news articles; answering questions; and establishing demonstration gardens.

What areas of the community does the Master Gardeners serve?

MG volunteers serve all community groups including:

  • Civic, Church, and School Organizations
  • The Handicapped, Elderly and Confined
  • Environmental Organizations
  • Community Officials
  • Garden Clubs
  • Charitable and Non-profit organizations

What are the requirements to become a Master Gardener?

To become a Master Gardener, individuals receive forty hours of in-depth horticultural training by Extension specialists and agents from the University of Tennessee and local experts in horticulture.  Students who complete the training with a passing grade, meet the attendance requirements, and complete a minimum of forty hours of volunteer service will be awarded the honorary title of Certified Tennessee Master Gardener Volunteer.  Certification as a Master Gardener is valid for one year, and is maintained by meeting annual volunteer (service) and continuing education requirements.

How do I fulfill my hours of Volunteer Service?

Hamilton County Master Gardeners have many community-based opportunities for providing volunteer services.  Some examples can be found in the Volunteer Opportunities and Projects page on this site.  Similarly, continuing education opportunities abound through out the year including workshops, seminars, and other formal and informal meetings.

Can I use the title of Master Gardener in my business or employment?

Master Gardeners use their title only when performing unpaid volunteer work. Master Gardeners make only UT approved recommendations and do not deal with commercial problems.