Join Us

If you have a love of gardening, a desire for learning and a will to promote resilient gardening practices, consider becoming a Master Gardener serving Kingston, Gananoque, Napanee, Brockville, Lansdowne, Mallorytown, Rockport and the surrounding areas.

Interested? Drop in on one of our monthly meetings or email us

What training do I need?

Since Master Gardeners provide research-based advice, members must demonstrate a strong horticultural foundation. There are three paths towards building or demonstrating your horticultural knowledge:

  • Online study through Dalhousie University. The four required courses are:
    • The Science of Gardening
    • Maintaining the Garden
    • Plant Identification and Use
    • The Art of Gardening
  • Online study through University of Guelph. The three required courses are:
    • Plant Identification
    • Soils and Plant Growth
    • Integrated Pest Management
  • If you have a strong horticultural background or want to dedicate yourself to self-directed study you can write the Certification Exam:
    • Exam consists of 100 questions worth one mark each 
    • Exam is based on basic knowledge requirements outlined by MGOI (when you join you will have access to this information)
    • MGOI provide a self-study manual to help you prepare for the exam (when you join you will have access to this information).

Our chapter, when funds permit, reimburses you for a percentage of your course fees or covers the cost of writing the certification exam. Whichever path you choose, you have three years to complete your learning.

Since Master Gardeners are expected to provide up-to-date advice, we encourage lifelong learning. After you’ve completed your training you must demonstrate your commitment to lifelong learning by completing a minimum of six continuing education units each year. There are many ways to fulfill this requirement – researching and writing articles/blogs or presentations, attending workshops or technical updates, or taking additional online courses.

What’s my volunteer commitment?

You need to commit to 30 hours of volunteer service per year:

20 advice hours

  • Staffing Master Gardener Advice Clinics at farmer’s markets, home shows, and other local events
  • Answering gardening questions
  • Researching and speaking on gardening topics to interested groups
  • Conducting community workshops
  • Writing articles or fact sheets
  • Running plant diagnostic clinics, garden clinics, or demonstrations
  • Partnering with groups within the community

10 administrative hours

  • Attending Master Gardener meetings
  • Preparing for lectures or clinics
  • Organizing a garden tour, workshop, or conference
  • Serving on the executive or other committee, like the MGIT (Master Gardener in Training) study group as a mentor, or a provincial Master Gardener committee.

Ongoing education hours

Once Master Gardener status has been achieved, in addition to the above,  six CEU’s (continuing education units) are required annually.    Topics should be those where he or she feels the need for more in depth and up-to-date information.

Need more information?