The mission of the Summit County Master Gardeners is to teach environmentally sound, research-based horticultural practices and promote gardening for the citizens of Summit County under the auspices of The Ohio State University Extension.
Master Gardeners Summit County, Ohio State University Extension is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. The Summit County Master Gardeners are affiliated with OSU Extension of Summit County. OSU Extension embraces human diversity and is committed to ensuring that all education programs conducted by Ohio State University Extension are available to clientele on a non-discriminatory basis without regard to race, color, age, gender, identity, or expression, disability, religion, sexual orientation, national origin or veteran’s status.
The Summit County Master Gardeners are affiliated with Ohio State University Extension, Summit County.
OSU Extension, Summit County
440 Vernon Odom Blvd.,
Akron, OH 44307
Summit County Master Gardeners
P.O. Box 2452
Akron, Ohio 44309
BECOME A MASTER GARDENER
Thank you for your interest in Summit County’s Master Gardener program. Train this summer/fall to volunteer in 2024. Deadline to apply is June 28, 2023! Serve Summit County communities and empower residents to grow!
2023 Basic Training Information
Information about the 2023 Basic Training for Master Gardener Volunteer Program.
- The Master Gardener Basic Training is the first step to becoming a Master Gardener Volunteer of Summit County, it consists of roughly 50 hours of classroom/lab learning. The second step is to complete your intern year by volunteering 50 hours to approved Summit County Master Gardener activities. This allows you to graduate, earning the official title of Master Gardener Volunteer. The third step, and an ongoing annual commitment, is to contribute 20 volunteer hours per year to approved Summit County Master Gardener activities and complete 10 continued education hours per year on topics relevant to gardening in Summit County.
The Training Schedule
Classes will be held every Wednesday from 5:30pm to 7:30pm, from August 16th to September 25th. These evening classes will take place at the Northwest Branch Akron Library.
Classes will also include six Saturdays from 9am to 2pm (August 19, September 9, 16, 30, October 14, 28)
3 dates at the OSU Extension Office at the Akron Urban League:
- August 19
- September 16
- October 28
3 TBD off-site field trips:
- September 9
- September 30
- October 14
The cost of the training is $275 and flexible payment options are available. Do not send payment until you have been notified of your acceptance into the 2023 cohort. Full payment or first payment is due before, or at, the first class. Financial assistance may be available to a limited number of applicants, it is not guaranteed. The procedure for seeking this financial assistance will be released upon notification of acceptance.
The following is a program overview of OSU’s Master Gardener program. If you have more questions, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Master Gardener Volunteer Basic Training
The process of becoming a Master Gardener begins with gathering information and attending training classes. Typically, training is held once per year. All potential volunteers will: (1) complete an application the online portal (2) have references collected by Extension professionals; (3) complete an interview; (4) submit to a criminal history fingerprint record check; and (5) agree to and sign the Volunteer Standards of Behavior form. In addition, each potential MGV receives a copy of the (6) Master Gardener Volunteer Program Policy Statement (7) agree to and sign the Master Gardener Volunteer Pest Management Information Policy and (8) agree to and sign the Child Abuse Recognition and Reporting forms.
Topics covered in training include:
- plant pathology
- integrated pest management
- plant propagation
- woody and herbaceous ornamentals
- invasive species
- wildlife management in the garden
Focus is on learning basic horticultural skills in order to assist the gardening public. Volunteer opportunities are presented throughout the course. All information and techniques presented in the training program reflect results of the latest research conducted by the Ohio State University and other leading educational institutions.
Complete the Final Exam
Work alone or team up with fellow trainees to complete this comprehensive take-home test. Completion requires reference to the Master Gardener Training Manual, lecture notes, OSU Extension Fact Sheets and Bulletins, and various publications available in the Extension Resource Center.
Fulfill Your Volunteer Commitment
Volunteer opportunities abound! Share your horticultural knowledge with the community through established Master Gardener programs: devote some time to educating others (adult and child-oriented programs); represent the Master Gardener Program at home and garden shows, and other community events; answer questions phoned to the Horticultural Hotline; write for the Master Gardener newsletter; help physically or emotionally challenged people with horticultural therapy; and provide clerical or administrative support. Volunteering at approved Master Gardener activities my begin after you have completed the course. At this time, 50 volunteer hours are required to fulfill your commitment.
Receive Your Designation of Master Gardener
New Master Gardeners are recognized at our fall Harvest Fest. Now “official,” new Master Gardeners can look forward to advanced training, fun and interesting social events, and expanded volunteer opportunities.
To keep Master Gardener designation active, participants must fulfill yearly continuing education and volunteer requirements. The annual commitment includes 20 Volunteer Hours and 10 Continuing Education Hours, plus MG dues of $20.00, all due in November.
Subscribe and Support
Subscribe to our gardening newsletters as well as updates by clicking below. In addition, please consider supporting the Summit County Master Gardeners.