Who Are Master Gardeners?

Master Gardeners are people interested in learning more about the art and science of growing and caring for plants for the garden, the landscape and the home. In exchange for classroom instruction, Master Gardeners extend garden information to their communities. The Master Gardener commitment is to act as a volunteer staff person for the OSU Extension Service.

What a Master Gardener does will vary according to the needs of the Extension Service and the desires, skills, and availability of the Master Gardener. Some Master Gardeners answer telephone requests for gardening information. Other staff plant clinics, plant sales or a booth at the county fair. Master Gardeners might also speak to local groups, serve on advisory committees, or assist with statewide activities such as the Master Gardener mini-college that is held annually at OSU.

Master Gardener Training

Master Gardener training classes are taught by OSU Extension agents and horticultural specialists. The program offers a basic, practical course in plant science and horticulture. Classes usually include: basic botany and plant physiology; pest identification and control methods; soil management and plant nutrition; and diagnosis and control of plant problems. Other general interest classes on such topics as lawns, greenhouses, water quality, houseplants, vegetables, trees and shrubs maybe included depending on class interest. The actual course content and sequence will vary from year to year and will depend on local needs and interests. Classes are held during the winter months usually January through March.

Are You Master Gardener Material?

Is the Master Gardener Program right for you? To help you decide whether you should apply for Master Gardener Training, see if you agree with these six statements:

  • Gardening and gardens have always been of interest to me.
  • Anything I learn about gardening I would be willing to share with others.
  • Really would like to learn a lot more about gardens, plants, and insects.
  • Do mystery things grow in my yard that I wish I could identify?
  • Entomology: bugs can be fun!
  • Nothing I plant seems to grow.

If you find yourself agreeing with these statements, the Master Gardener Program may be right for you. It could be one of the most interesting activities you have ever been involved in.

Interested in becoming a Master Gardener?

Contact Rachel Suits for more information!

Rachel Suits
Outreach Program Coordinator

Central Gorge Master Gardener Volunteer Opportunities

Hood River County Master Gardeners Program Resource

Information on participation in the Central Gorge Master Gardener Volunteer program.
Shiftboard logo.

Shiftboard Instructions

Hood River County Master Gardeners Program Resource

Shiftboard is an online tool for employee scheduling and workforce management.

Volunteer Service Record Sheet

Hood River County Master Gardeners Program Resource

These sheets will help you record your service hours to meet the Master Gardener annual guidelines.
Shiftboard logo.


Hood River County Master Gardeners Program Resource

Shiftboard is a employee scheduling and workforce management tool.

Tracking Volunteer Service

Hood River County Master Gardeners Program Resource

Master Gardener volunteers report total volunteer service hours by activity at the end of the year. This form is an aid for you to track your volunteer hours over the year by recording the date and hours worked each time you work on a project. Report totals at the end of the year.

Statewide Resources

Online Master Gardener Course

Master Gardener Program Resource

The Master Gardener & Home Horticulture Basic Training course is designed for anyone who is interested in learning more about the effective and sustainable management of their home horticultural landscape. There are no course prerequisites, although a basic understanding of plants is helpful.

Option 1: An alternate route to becoming a Certified Oregon State University Extension Master Gardener Volunteer, if the timing of the live training doesn't work for you.

Option 2: The same training Master Gardeners receive in Option 1, for those who want the training but do not want to become a Master Gardener Volunteer. Participants receive a Certificate of Home Horticulture upon successful completion of the online course.

In this course you will learn about the art and the science of caring for plants. We examine plant types (e.g. woody, herbaceous), garden types (e.g. container, vegetable), and elements that influence the growth and vigor of plants in the home garden (e.g. pathogens, soils, insects, management decisions). We will also focus on the prevention and diagnosis of plant problems, as well as a least toxic approach to tolerating and/or managing plant problems in the home horticultural landscape.

For more information and to enroll, visit the Online MG website:

Master Gardener Position Description

Master Gardener Program Resource

This form describes the job of a MG Extension volunteer, as well as position requirements and supervision.