Gardening is an activity with many rewards. “One of them is the satisfaction of sharing your plant knowledge with others,” said David Trinklein, University of Missouri Extension state horticulture specialist.

“The MU Extension Master Gardener program was initiated to do just that,” Trinklein said. “Its motto, ‘helping others learn to grow,’ emphasizes service to others as the program’s main objective.”

Registration is open for online Master Gardener training. The next 14-week session begins Jan. 17, 2021.

“While not meant to replace in-person training, which still is conducted in many Missouri counties, online classes represent another way to go through the core training required of all MU Extension Master Gardeners,” said Trinklein, who teaches the course with MU Extension horticulture specialist Sarah Denkler.

“Students work at their own pace within the confines of a course schedule,” he said.

Classes are delivered as a series of scripted and narrated video presentations. Topics include basic botany, soils and plant nutrition, vegetable gardening, fruit production, landscape design, woody ornamental plants, herbaceous ornamental plants, turf management, insect and disease management, and pesticide safety.

Those who successfully complete the core training and perform at least 30 hours of volunteer service qualify for MU Extension Master Gardener certification. Local Master Gardener coordinators help online trainees find volunteer opportunities to meet the service requirements.

Registration deadline for the spring online session is Jan. 10, 2021. For details and registration, visit

For more than 100 years, University of Missouri Extension has extended university-based knowledge beyond the campus into all counties of the state. In doing so, extension has strengthened families, businesses and communities.

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