How to become a Monterey Bay Master Gardener
Now accepting applications for the Monterey Bay Master Gardener training starting January 2014. Applications accepted from residents of Monterey, San Benito and Santa Cruz counties. Submission deadline is November 1, 2013. It is highly recommended that you submit your application early, as class size is limited to 40 students.
The Master Gardener program provides training in the latest gardening research, including integrated pest management and water conservation practices. In turn, Master Gardeners share their knowledge with their community. The primary role of the Master Gardener is to educate the community in the latest gardening research. We do not provide basic gardening services.
A typical Master Gardener
- Enjoys sharing their knowledge
- Enjoys volunteering in the community
- Has an interest in learning about sustainable gardening practices
- Has a passion for gardening
- Has an eagerness to provide educational support to local home gardeners
The Master Gardener program is looking for people with a variety of skills
We want you! The Master Gardener program is looking for people with these skills who would enjoy sharing them for the benefit of the community.
- customer service
- event experience
- web design
- public speaking
- public relations
- program development (gardening)
- community liaison
- volunteer coordination
- fund development
- telephone support (answering local gardening questions)
About the program
- The UC Master Gardener program is open to individuals with or without gardening experience who wish to increase their knowledge and horticultural skills. They must have a desire to serve their community via our volunteer programs.
- These programs are the cornerstone of the Master Gardener concept and provide important outreach to the community from the University of California’s division of Agriculture & Natural Resources.
- These outreach activities includes plant and disease/pest hotlines, workshops, presentations, community gardens and much more.
- We are seeking people who desire to make a long-term commitment to the program.
- Monterey Bay Master Gardeners provide grants to local projects such as schools, non-profit groups and community gardens.
- Class topics include botany, composting, integrated pest management (IPM), soils, water management, entomology, plant pathology, fruit and ornamental tree culture and sustainable landscape practices. Other subjects of interest may also be included.
- Training is by lecture, demonstration and hands-on activities.
- The provided texts are published by the University of California and are based on research from UC Agriculture and Natural Resources.
- Instructors are University of California scientists, UC Cooperative Extension staff, professionals in the Agricultural and Landscape industries and certified Master Gardeners.
- Monterey Bay Master Gardener classes are held every two years. The next session starts January 18, 2014.
- Monterey Bay Master Gardener classes are held at the University of California Cooperative Extension at 1432 Freedom Blvd, Watsonville, CA 95076.
- Monterey Bay Master Gardener class size is limited to 40 students.
About the Training
What is required for your appointment as a Master Gardener the first year?
- Reside in Santa Cruz, Monterey or San Benito County. The Monterey Bay Master Gardener chapter only accepts residents of these counties.
- Attend training over 16 weeks with only one unexcused absence. Training is held three Saturdays a month for 6 months. Classes are generally 5 to 7 hours a day.
- Complete 50 hours of volunteering in the first year (June 2014 to June 2015). Volunteer for Master Gardener approved projects
- Pass open text book exam by 70%
- Pass background screening (fingerprint clearance)
- Sign the Code of Conduct and the Annual Agreement
- Pay the one-time materials fee of $175. (Fee covers texts and other educational materials).
How do you keep your Master Gardener Certification each year?
- Complete 30 hours of volunteering a year
- Complete 20 hours of continuing education a year.
How to apply
- Submit an application by November 1, 2013.
Mail Print this form. Write your answers on the form and mail to
Master Gardener 2014 Application
25330 Hutchinson Road
Los Gatos, CA 95033
You will receive an acknowledgement email from email@example.com when you submit your application (or letter if you did not provide an email address).
- Attend the candidate interview. You will receive an email (or letter) by mid-October with your interview date and time. Interviews will be held on November 15 or 16, 2013. Candidate interviews will be held at the UC Cooperative Extension at 1432 Freedom Blvd, Watsonville, CA 95076l. You will be notified if you have been accepted into the program by November 30, 2013.
- Obtain a finger print clearance before the first day of class, January 18, 2012. University of California Cooperative Extension requires that each master gardener obtain a fingerprint clearance. Previous fingerprint clearances are not accepted. Fingerprinting requires a minimal fee (usually $20). This fee is separate from the course materials fee. You will be given the MBMG code for the fingerprint clearance at the candidate interview. Fingerprinting may be obtained at these locations: http://ag.ca.gov/fingerprints/publications/contact.php
Attend first day of class, January 18, 2014 and bring:
- Course fees of $175
- Fingerprint clearance document