Interested in taking your interest in gardening to the next level? Become certified as a Master Gardner! Penn State Extension has announced that applications are being accepted through August 31, 2012 for the Penn State Master Gardener training program in Allegheny County. The 2012-2013 training class will be held on Tuesday mornings from 9:30 a.m. to noon at the Allegheny County Extension office in Point Breeze.
Penn State Master Gardeners are volunteers trained and certified by Penn State Extension. Once they complete their training, master gardeners support the mission of Penn State Extension by utilizing research-based information to educate the public on best practices in consumer horticulture and environmental stewardship. Penn State Master Gardeners of Allegheny County answer the public’s “green” questions through the garden hotline, and they offer educational programs to all ages through school programs, a speaker’s bureau and Backyard Gardening Lectures at local garden centers. They actively participate in civic beautification projects, demonstration gardens in North Park, South Park, and the Allegheny County Courthouse, and informational exhibits at various events.
Selected applicants will attend classes beginning October 2 and continuing until November 13. Following a break for the holidays, classes resume on January 8 and continue weekly through April 9 when the final exam is administered. The cost for the training program is $200. After completing the in-class course, master gardeners are required to provide a minimum of 50 hours of volunteer service within the first year, and 20 hours each following year to maintain certification.
To obtain a Penn State Master Gardener application for Allegheny County, visit the website at http://extension.psu.edu/allegheny/programs/master-gardener/mg-training, or contact the master gardeners at Gardenline by phone 412-473-2600 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Completed applications must be returned by August 31 to Master Gardener Program, Penn State Extension of Allegheny County, 400 North Lexington Street – 3rd Floor, Pittsburgh, PA 15208.