Become a Master Gardener Volunteer
2023 Master Gardener Basic Training Program
The application and selection process for the 2023 Master Gardener Basic Training class has ended. We encourage you to mark your calendar and consider applying for the next Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Basic Training class, in the fall of 2024.
2024 Master Gardener Basic Training Program
We have tentatively scheduled a Master Gardener Program Informational Meeting for Thursday, July 18, 2024, at 2:00p.m. It will be held inside 4-H Hall at the Sedgwick County Extension Education Center, 7001 W. 21st St. N., in Wichita. The meeting will provide an overview of the Master Gardener volunteer program, including volunteer requirements and expectations, a look at the basic training schedule and curriculum, and an outline of the application process. Applications must be submitted no later than July 25, 2024. Interviews will then be scheduled, and once completed, a new incoming class will be selected prior to the end of August 2024. Basic training starts the first Thursday in September, with classes from 9:00am to 4:00pm each Thursday through mid-December. Some or all of the interviews and training for incoming Master Gardeners may be virtual.
Information will be updated throughout the year, as we have more information and make decisions about our Fall class of 2024. You can access information on all of our upcoming gardening classes, as well as updates on our Master Gardener Program at www.sedgwick.ksu.edu/events.
The information below provides further details about the Master Gardener program.
What Does Becoming an Extension Master Gardener Involve?
The Extension Master Gardener program is a volunteer program in which K-State Research & Extension "trades" classroom training for volunteer time. New Extension Master Gardener volunteers attend a basic training course, which includes 40 to 50 hours of training in all aspects of horticulture. Basic Training classes are held on Thursdays from September through mid-December. After training is complete, volunteers donate an equivalent number of hours of volunteer service in the community. Volunteer service activities vary widely, but all strive to provide horticultural education to all members of the community. In Sedgwick County, annual requirements for volunteers include 48 hours of volunteer work through projects and events we sponsor, as well as 18 hours of additional training in order to remain an active Extension Master Gardener in good standing.
Why Become an Extension Master Gardener?
Extension Master Gardeners take part in rewarding volunteer experiences to share current, research-based horticulture information with neighbors and community members across Sedgwick County. As trained volunteers, Extension Master Gardeners become friends with many interesting and talented individuals. Extension Master Gardeners never stop learning, but continue to grow in their knowledge of garden related issues. Being an Extension Master Gardener volunteer is a fun, interesting and rewarding experience.
Who Can Apply?
Any Sedgwick County resident, age 18 or over, with a high school diploma or equivalent and an interest in gardening can apply. If you want to improve your skills and knowledge and you like to work with people, the Extension Master Gardener program may be for you. A potential Sedgwick County Master Gardener must demonstrate an interest in gardening, an enthusiasm for acquiring and sharing knowledge, and a sincere commitment to volunteerism and community betterment.
The application process involves the following steps:
- Attend the (optional) Informational Meeting where the Master Gardener program is explained and requirements for Master Gardener trainees are outlined. The next Informational Meeting is scheduled for Thursday, July 18, 2024, from 2:00-4:00pm at the K-State Research and Extension offices, 7001 W. 21st St. N.
- Complete and submit a Master Gardener Application no later than Thursday, July 25, 2024.
- Participate in an interview (interviews will be scheduled between July 29 and August 9, 2024).
Applicants will receive notice of whether they have been accepted into the Master Gardener class prior to the end of August 2024. Class size is limited.
What is the Cost?
An enrollment fee of $120 covers the cost of all educational materials. Need-based partial scholarships are available. Request the form from the Program Coordinator.