This is the blog site for the
University of Maryland Extension Baltimore City Master Gardeners!
The Maryland Master Gardener Program
The Maryland Master Gardener Program was started in 1978 as a means of extending the horticultural and pest management expertise of University of Maryland Extension to the general public. Today, this popular program can be found in 18 Maryland counties, Baltimore City, and two Maryland prisons.
The program’s mission is to train volunteer educators to extend the services, programs, and expertise of the College of Agriculture and Natural resources to the general public. Master Gardeners are volunteer representatives of the University of Maryland. The mission is to “educate Maryland residents about safe, effective, and sustainable horticultural practices that build healthy gardens, landscapes, and communities.”
The program is designed to train volunteer horticultural educators for University of Maryland Extension- the principal outreach education unit of the University of Maryland. Participants receive 40-50 hours of basic trainingfrom University of Maryland professionals and then agree to work in their communities to teach Marylanders how to cultivate garden spaces and manage landscapes sustainably using research-based information. This environmental horticulture approach reduces fertilizer and pesticide use resulting in improved soil and water quality.
Master Gardeners typically work in group-directed teams and committees with trainees matched to senior Master Gardeners. Typical activities include
• Environmental gardening demonstrations and classes
• Plant clinics where plant and pest problems are diagnosed and residents learn least-toxic solutions
• Individual phone and site consultations
• Composting classes and demonstration sites
• Speakers’ bureaus that make public presentations
• Youth gardening
• Community gardening and beautification
• Information booths at fairs and festivals
• Advanced training/continuing education