University of Maryland Extension

Basic Training

Basic Training classes are typically offered once a year within most of the University of Maryland County Extension offices.  Class dates and times differ by county and are usually held in the spring or the fall. 

A fee is charged for enrollment in the Basic Training course.  This fee pays for the mandatory Master Gardener Handbook and also covers additional costs to support the program.  The fee amount differs by county, with a range of $150.00 to $300.00.  Scholarships may be available to offset the fee. (For more information, please contact your Master Gardener County Coordinator.)

Through the training program, participants are taught many different horticultural subjects by specialists, educators, and other horticulture professionals. Topics may include


Lawn Care


Native Plants

Diagnosing Plant Problems

Organic Gardening


Pesticide use and safety


Soils and fertilizers

Flower Gardening

Tree and shrub selection and care

Integrated Pest Managment

Vegetable and fruit gardening

Once a Master Gardener Trainee has completed the Basic Training, he or she becomes a Master Gardener Intern.  Interns must complete at least 40 hours of approved volunteer service before achieving the status of Certified Master Gardener.

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