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Master Gardener Training

How do I become a Tennessee Master Gardener?

If you answer the following question with “Yes,” please consider joining our Master Gardener Volunteer Program:

* Do you have an interest in serving in as a volunteer on one of our projects?
* Do you have the desire to share the joy of gardening with others?
* Do you want to teach others more about nature and their environment?
* Are you prepared and committed to complete the required training and volunteer service?

What are the requirements to become a Master Gardener?

Individuals must receive a total of forty hours of in-depth horticultural training. Students who complete the training with a passing grade, meet the attendance requirements, and complete a minimum of 40 hours of volunteer service  and 8 hours of continuing education hours will be awarded the honorary title of Certified Tennessee Master Gardener Volunteer. Volunteer service hours benefit Extension programs and the community. Certification as a Master Gardener is valid for one year, and recertification is both possible and encouraged through the ongoing contribution of volunteer hours.

How and when can I apply?

Classes are announced to the public in Fall for the upcoming year. Training is limited to a total of 60 students (30 in each session) and classes fill up quickly.  The application for the next training session will be made available 2 months or so in advance.

Is a fee charged for the training classes?

Yes – a registration fee covers course materials and first year membership dues to the Master Gardeners of Hamilton County.

When will the next MG training be held? How long does the training last?

Master Gardener training in the Hamilton County is held once every year. Held January through April, the three-hour classes are conducted for fifteen weeks. You can choose to attend the Monday night class or the Tuesday morning class.

Where are the classes?

Classes are held in the Hamilton County Agriculture Center located at 6183 Adamson Circle (just off of Bonny Oaks Drive in the Industrial Park).

Who teaches the classes? What will I learn?

All classes are taught by Extension specialists and agents from The University of Tennessee, local experts in horticulture, and certified Master Gardeners. Topics include basic botany, soil testing, insect pests, plant diseases, lawn care, vegetable gardening, fruit tree care, flowers, houseplants, herbs, and landscaping.

What happens after I graduate and become a Master Gardener?

Master Gardener Interns are required to contribute 40 hours of community volunteer work and 8 continuing education hours during the next twelve months. Every year thereafter, 27 hours of community volunteer activity and 8 hours of continuing education are required to maintain your certification.