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Master Gardener Volunteer Program in Catawba County

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attendees at hoop house demomeeting participants listening to a speakerpeople working with vinespeople working in field

What is the NC State Extension Master Gardener℠ Program?

Extension Master Gardener℠ volunteers are members of the local community who enjoy gardening and volunteering. They are enthusiastic, willing to learn and help others.

New volunteers receive extensive training in horticulture (no gardening experience required!) and are willing to share what they have learned with others by volunteering in the community. Volunteer work is done through the Catawba County Center of N.C. Cooperative Extension to provide horticulture-related information to the public.

Stay up to date about all of the classes, workshops, cooking classes, tours, and activities – sign up for the Catawba County Extension monthly newsletter.

Should I become a Master Gardener℠ volunteer?

To help you decide if you should apply to become a Master Gardener℠ volunteer, ask yourself these questions:

  • Do I want to learn more about the care and management of many types of plants?
  • Am I eager to participate in a practical and intense training program?
  • Do I look forward to sharing my knowledge with people in my community?
  • Do I have enough time to attend training sessions and to serve as a volunteer?

If you answered yes to these questions, the Extension Master Gardenersm program could be for you!

Volunteer Training

If accepted into the Extension Master Gardener℠ program in Catawba County, you will attend a 36 hour training course. Classes are taught by Extension staff, local experts, and Master Gardener volunteers.

The program offers a minimum of 36 hours of instruction on horticulture topics including lawns; ornamental trees and shrubs; insect, disease, and weed management; soils and plant nutrition; vegetable gardening; home fruit production; garden flowers; houseplants; and landscape design.

During your first year as a Master Gardener℠ volunteer you will complete 40 hours of volunteer work in projects of your choice. Each additional year you wish to remain a Master Gardener℠  volunteer you will volunteer 20 hours. There is a wide variety of projects that you can participate in with other Master Gardener℠ volunteers or you can create a new project.

people eating lunch at a meeting volunteers learning about plants volunteers transplanting seedlings flower trials

What Are the Kinds of Volunteer Activities?

Some of the projects that Master Gardener℠ volunteers in Catawba County are currently working on include:  diagnose plant, insect, and disease problems.

  • staffing plant clinics and educational exhibits.
  • managing demonstration and community gardens.
  • presenting lectures on various gardening topics.
  • bringing the joy of gardening to senior citizens or young children.

Master Gardener℠ volunteers are representatives of North Carolina Cooperative Extension. Master Gardener℠ volunteers follow the research-based recommendations of N.C. Cooperative Extension. The title Master Gardener volunteer can be used by volunteers only when engaged in Extension-sponsored activities.

Who can become a Master Gardener volunteer?

Individuals with an interest in both gardening and volunteer service are potential candidates for the program. No previous formal training is necessary.

Why Should I become a Master Gardener volunteer?

You will become knowledgeable about a wide array of gardening subjects. The practical training is designed to:

  • increase your confidence and horticultural skills
  • enable you to assist the public with questions and problems involved with gardening

Volunteer service helps your community and you derive the pleasure and reward of working with others who share your interests.

Volunteers also participate in advanced Master Gardener℠ training classes and field trips. The learning and the opportunities for satisfaction never end!

If you have any questions you may call 828-465-8240 or or email Adam Smith at

The terms Master Gardener℠, Master Gardener℠ volunteer, and Extension Master Gardener℠ are North Carolina State University service marks and can only be used by North Carolina Cooperative Extension.

Written By

Natalie Cline, N.C. Cooperative ExtensionNatalie ClineCounty Extension Administrative Assistant Call Natalie Email Natalie N.C. Cooperative Extension, Catawba County Center
Page Last Updated: 2 years ago
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