CSU Master Gardener program returning to southeast Colorado

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Published Saturday, September 15, 2018
by Bruce Fickenscher

It has been quite a while since Colorado State University Extension has offered the Master Gardener program in the southeast area. With renewed interest in the program, applications are being accepted for Master Gardner classes which will be conducted in 2019. The host location will be determined by where the majority of the applications are centered. Southeast area extension offices are located in Baca, Bent, Cheyenne, Crowley, Kiowa, Otero, and Prowers counties.

The application process includes suppling references, submitting to a background check, and signing a volunteer agreement.

Classes will begin January 31 and run weekly though April 11 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and will include a 45-minute lunch break. Coursework is focused on the non-commercial home gardener.

Topics usually include

  • Plant Health Care and the Diagnostic Process*
  • How Plants Grow (basic botany) (full day)
  • Soils, Soil Amendments, and Fertilizers*
  • Introduction to Plant Pathology (plant diseases) (full day)
  • Introduction to Entomology (insects) (full day)
  • Lawn Care and Diagnosing Lawn Problems (full day)
  • Weed Management (full day)
  • Introduction to the Colorado Master Gardener Program*
  • Tree Care and the Science of Planting Trees*

*NOTE: In 2019, these classes will be a combination of at-home work including online videos, readings, pre and post tests and worksheets, followed by in-class review and discussion. The coordinator will provide the schedule.

The classes are required for Colorado Master Gardener Apprentices, and students that elect not to take them will be dismissed from the program. No refunds will be given.

Participants must be at least 18 years of age, and can apply through local extension offices. Students are required to attend a minimum of 80 percent of the classes, complete the online classes and homework assignments, and complete 50 hours of volunteer time by October 31, 2019.

The Colorado Master Gardener course costs $170, which includes all class material. Participants may also apply for a Limited Income Scholarship which reduces the cost to $85. Though no college credits are available for the training, the course is equivalent to a four-credit college course that would cost $1,932.

Contact your local extension agent to learn more, or visit http://www.extension.colostate.edu/SEA.

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