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NDSU Extension Master Gardener program seeks applicants

The NDSU Extension Master Gardener program is accepting applications. The volunteer service organization aims to beautify communities, educate the public about gardening, work with youth and encourage conservation of natural resources.

The next Master Gardener training program is scheduled to run for 10 weeks beginning Jan. 24 and ending April 3, 2020. Classes will not be held on March 20.

The majority of the participants will take the class online. 

"Online students can log in on their computers and participate in the live Friday morning classes," said Esther McGinnis, NDSU Extension horticulturist and Extension Master Gardener director. "Alternatively, students can watch the recorded lectures at a more convenient time. These online options allow students to continue taking the class even if they are wintering in another state."

Course topics include annual and perennial flowers, tree selection and maintenance, soil health, composting, pollinator plants, plant diseases and insects, vegetable and fruit production, and lawn maintenance. NDSU faculty and Extension personnel teach the classes.

When participants complete the training, they are known as Master Gardener interns. They must volunteer 48 hours of time during a two-year period on horticultural projects in cooperation with NDSU Extension. After that, they are certified as Master Gardeners.

Potential volunteer projects include answering gardening questions in the Extension office, organizing horticultural workshops, managing school and community gardens, designing and maintaining pollinator gardens, and providing horticultural therapy.

Tuition for the 2020 class is $225 plus a background check fee of $35 for participants wishing to become a certified Extension Master Gardener or $450 for the non-volunteer option. High-speed internet access, computer knowledge and an email account are required.

Twenty North Dakota counties will be accepting a limited number of Master Gardener applications. The application deadline is Nov 18.

For more information, contact your county office of NDSU Extension or McGinnis at 701-231-7971 or

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Vice President for University Relations
North Dakota State University
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