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Apply Now to be a Sumter County Master Gardener Volunteer!


Sumter County Master Gardeners Volunteer in the Demo Garden

Interested in being a Master Gardener Volunteer?

Do you enjoy gardening and want to know more about gardening in central Florida?  Is conserving and protecting water quality important to you?  Are you challenged by acquiring new skills or expertise  through workshops or classes?  Do you enjoy sharing what you know with others?  If you answered yes to any of these questions, the Sumter County Master Gardener Volunteer program could be for you!

Applications are ready for you to apply for the Sumter County Master Gardener Volunteer program.  Complete your Application, and then mail it by July 1 to UF/IFAS Extension Sumter County, ATTN:  Donna Lester, 7620 SR 471, Suite 2, Bushnell, FL  33513.

When are the classes?

Classes will be held on Fridays from 9 am to 3:30 pm, August 30 through December 13, 2019, and are held at the Sumter County Extension Office at 7620 SR 471, Suite 2, Bushnell.  Master Gardener students will enjoy classroom lectures by experts in their fields, hands-on activities, projects and field trips.  This intensive training covers topics that include:

Master Gardener Wildlife Training with Maxine Hunter, Agent from Marion County

  • basic botany
  • plant propagation
  • soils and fertilizers
  • vegetable and fruit production
  • identifying and controlling insects and diseases
  • identifying ornamental plants
  • pesticide safety and alternatives
  •  attracting wildlife
  •  and more!

All material covered is based on research from University of Florida and includes the newly published Florida Master Gardener Student Manual.

What do Master Gardeners in Sumter County do?

Sumter County Master Gardeners at Master Gardener Booth at Epcot Flower and Garden Festival in 2019.

Master Gardener Volunteers are educators who answer horticultural questions for county residents, and they share unbiased, research-based information with the public.  Master Gardener Volunteers:

  • share information by phone, email, at plant clinics and event booths
  • write newsletter or newspaper articles
  • develop and deliver presentations for garden clubs, civic organizations and MG speaker series
  • support youth programs
  • garden in the award winning UF/IFAS Extension Sumter County Demonstration Garden in Bushnell
  • become more knowledgeable through advanced educational opportunities

Read about Master Gardener Training and Activities or contact us with you questions.

Master Gardener interns complete 75 hours of volunteer time and 12 hours of continuing education.  Certified Master Gardeners annually renew their recertification by completing 35 hours of volunteer time and 12 hours of continuing education.

For  answers to questions on applying to become a Master Gardener or other information about the Master Gardener program, please contact Lisa Sanderson, the Sumter County Residential Horticulture Agent II and Master Gardener Coordinator at 352-569-6867, or Donna Lester, Program Assistant, at at 352-569-6864.

Apply Now for the Sumter County Master Gardener Program!

UF/IFAS Extension programs are open to all persons without regard to race, color, sex, age, disability, religion, or national origin.

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