Do you love gardening and sharing with others? Consider becoming a master gardener volunteer.
The University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) will train volunteers for the Florida Master Gardener Program. This 13-week program includes indoor and outdoor classroom work, online modules and hands-on activities. The program provides an overview of horticulture subjects, environmentally sound gardening practices and issues affecting Collier County residents and homeowners.
The 2017 graduates will be advising homeowners in Collier County about designing, planting and caring for their landscapes in an environmentally friendly way. This is accomplished through outreach programs throughout the year at Home Depot, local libraries, the Naples Botanical Gardens, the 3rd Street Farmers Market and at the UF/IFAS Extension Office.
The volunteers support the public by answering inquiries regarding plant problems, plant identification, integrated pest management, and plant growth and maintenance. Volunteers also participate in the Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ program, and make home visits as Florida Yards and Neighborhood Program consultants. They also host the fall Southwest Florida Yard and Garden Showand the Garden Workshop Series in the spring.
To become a Master Gardener, you must demonstrate a personal commitment to volunteering, a passion for learning, and enthusiasm for sharing your knowledge with others.
All prospective candidates must attend one of the one-hour preview sessions to be held on the following dates: 1 PM on Friday, December 9, 2016; 10 AM on Wednesday, December 14, 2016; 1 PM on Friday, January 6, 2017; 10 AM on Monday, January 9, 2017; 10 AM on Wednesday, January 18, 2017; or 1 PM on Friday, January 20, 2017. These preview sessions will take place at the UF/IFAS Collier County Extension Office, 14700 Immokalee Road, Naples. Please register at colliermgtrainingpreview.eventbrite.com for any of the classes.
Following the preview sessions, 17 people will be chosen to participate in the Florida Master Gardener Program training. Classes will start March 7, 2017, and will continue through the final test and graduation on June 1, 2017. For more information contact Isabel Way, UF/IFAS Collier County Master Gardener coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the UF/IFAS Collier County Extension Office at 239-252-4800.