Home & Garden

Become a Master Gardener and share your knowledge

Master Gardeners inspect plant leaves.
Master Gardeners inspect plant leaves.

When you hear the term “Master Gardener,” what do you think of? Do you think of someone with a green thumb who can grow anything?

Some of the University of California Cooperative Extension Master Gardeners are just that.

More commonly, certified Master Gardeners are people with a passion for growing, in the personal sense as well as in the acquisition of skills. They enjoy sharing their know-how with others. Master gardeners are comfortable in a learning environment both indoors and outdoors. They enjoy experimenting and testing — and reap intrinsic rewards from their work.

If you’re interested in spending a few months learning the science of gardening and how to share your knowledge with others, apply today to become a UC Master Gardener.

The upcoming 17-week course, beginning Feb. 18 through June 23, will cover topics such as soil, irrigation, insects, plant propagation and pest management. You’ll learn just about everything you need to know to become a “master at gardening.”

In return for this valuable training, you will work (or play, depending on your perspective) as a UC Master Gardener volunteer for a certain number of hours each year, sharing gardening information with the community.

There are a variety of ways we share information, including: organizing and delivering presentations to home gardeners, developing educational materials, maintaining various social media channels, answering helpline gardening questions, writing newspaper columns, working in our demonstration garden, and dispersing information at farmers markets. Volunteer work can be tailored to your horticultural interests and strengths.

To learn how to become a certified Master Gardener in San Luis Obispo County, attend an informational meeting from noon to 2 p.m. Oct. 29 at the UCCE auditorium, 2156 Sierra Way, San Luis Obispo. You’ll learn about the application and certification process and meet current Master Gardeners. Applications are available online and are due Nov. 13.

For more information, visit our website at http://ucanr.edu/sites/mgslo/ or call (805) 781-5939.

Learning and teaching can be fun with people who share your passions and goals. You can make a difference in our community and in our world.

Lee Oliphant is a UC Master Gardener.

Got a gardening question?

In San Luis Obispo call 781-5939, Arroyo Grande, 473-7190 and Templeton, 434-4105. Visit us at http://ucanr.org/sites/mgslo/ or email us at anrmgslo@ucanr.edu. Follow us on Instagram at slo_mgs and like us on Facebook. Informative garden workshops are held the third Saturday of every month, 10 a.m. to noon at 2156 Sierra Way, San Luis Obispo. Garden docents are available after the workshop until 1 p.m. To request a tour of the garden, call 781-5939.