Master Gardener

No, I am not one. But I did apply today for the course here in DC. Interviews are in December, and the course is in February and March. 2.5 hours every Tuesday and Thursday night. Geez! The 50 hours of volunteering afterward is much easier to swallow--I volunteer anywhere from five to 15 hours in any given week anyway (an average of about six or seven, however--15 is peak time, which has been in June and December for me here), three or four of which is at a Master Gardener-approved volunteering place already (the Youth Garden). For a lot of people, I think, the 50 hours of volunteering is more difficult than the book learning and the test, but for me? That'll be a snap.

But, since being a Master Gardener is basically just being a plant-information-disseminating volunteer, I guess people wouldn't go into it if they didn't want to work a ton of hours without getting paid, eh?

Personal experience is a great teacher. But I find that I don't learn as well (or, rather, I don't have as good resources to refer to) if I'm not in a classroom-type setting. So, despite the relative intensity and shortness of instruction, I think this will be an awesome experience for me. If, after the interviews, I'm one of the lucky 35 who get to take the course.

Is anyone out there a Master Gardener? Do you know anything about DC's program (which, I think, is fairly new)? What are the Master Gardeners like in your area? Are there similar programs in other countries?

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6 Responses to Master Gardener

  1. Yay! Congrats on deciding to pursue it! I got accepted last week and am really looking forward to it. Unfortunately, I don't know anything about the D.C. program, though. Good luck!

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  2. I finished the classes here in DC this year, although I'm still plugging away on my hours at the Washington Youth Garden. A lot of the other volunteers there are also MGs or MG trainees. The classes are all taught by guest instructors, so it can be hit-or-miss, but for the most part they're pretty good. Unfortunately, there's only one class dedicated to veggies and one to herbs- I'd like to see more emphasis on these, but that's a personal preference.

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  3. That is a good enough recommendation for me! I, too, would like more emphasis on edibles, but I think with courses like this, it's more about getting the basics first and then expanding on your own.

    Which day do you volunteer at the Youth Garden? So few people show up on Saturdays now, it has been a bit ridonk.

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  4. I'm usually there on Saturdays, so maybe we've met before? I was just there this morning actually! I love love love that place. Were you at the Growing Green festival?

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  5. I was not there today, because my travel time (I walk) is so long, I would still be walking and I have to leave right this minute to go somewhere!

    I was at the Growing Green festival for a while (I left early then, too, for plans I had). I was the guy who was allergic to melon? I spent most of the time chopping strawberries for the giant fruit salad in the wok.

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  6. oh yeah! i think we may have met before! are you the fellow who walks to the ny ave metro to get home? i think we had a discussion about transportation options from nw before. i usually bike from c. heights!

    small gardening world, eh?

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