Laurel County Master Gardeners
The Laurel County Extension Office is excited to announce the beginning of a new Kentucky Extension Master Gardener Program. This series has been extremely popular in the past and we have had several requests to start a new class. The program will be facilitated by Steve Mobley, Extension Agent for Horticulture, and Jasmine Fox, Agriculture and Horticulture Program Assistant.
Master Gardeners are a group of trained volunteers who work with the staff at the Laurel County Extension Office to provide consumers with reliable, up to date researched based information about gardening and landscaping. In order to become an Extension Master Gardener participants must complete a training course in core subjects taught by Horticulture Extension Agents, industry professionals, University of Kentucky and Kentucky State University specialists. The Master Gardener Program provides nearly sixty hours of training sessions held in a classroom setting.
Topics covered in the program include:
• Basic botany, entomology, and plant pathology
• Growing better lawns with less effort, while preserving the environment
• Understanding how soils affect plant performance
• Proper care and maintenance of plants
• Fruit, flower and vegetable gardening
• Composting and organic gardening
• Identifying, selecting, planting, and maintaining landscape trees and shrubs
• Diagnosing plant problems
Extension Master Gardeners are required to complete 40 hours of volunteer time within one year of course completion. Examples of projects that other Master Gardeners have completed in the past include children’s gardens; memorial/meditation gardens; church or school vegetable gardens; and beautification projects such as planting trees or flowers in community areas.
As Extension volunteers, Extension Master Gardeners must complete a Master Gardener application which includes background screening using the standards set forth by the University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Client Protection Policy. Applications are available at the Laurel County Extension Office. Once accepted into the program, the participant will be charged a $25 registration fee to help cover that cost of materials.