ADEL — Become an Iowa Master Gardener by completing the core training course this fall at the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Dallas County office in Adel, Iowa. Gardeners will learn best practices for choosing plants, designing gardens, and managing pests. Classes start in September.


Those interested in the course can apply at http://mastergardenerhours.hort.iastate.edu/application-form.php


Space is limited. The course fee is $195.00.


“Starting this September, people can begin their journey to become a master gardener volunteer,” said Susan DeBlieck, program assistant in the Master Gardener program at ISU Extension and Outreach. “The training course includes lectures on gardening subjects, from growing vegetables and fruits to designing gardens with native plants.”


After completing the course, master gardener trainees start their work as volunteers within the community. Upon completion of the 40 hours of volunteer service, the master gardener title becomes official and they join thousands of other Iowa volunteers.


“Master gardeners provide information and education to Iowans. They are a community resource establishing community gardens, helping people identify plant diseases and growing nectar plants for pollinators,” said DeBlieck. In 2016, over 120,000 volunteer hours in Iowa were logged by Iowa Master Gardeners.


DeBlieck notes a second enrollment option for those not interested in volunteering. Registering as a professional horticulture trainee ($550 fee), offers the same educational course and materials, but participants earn a certificate upon completion without having to provide the 40 hours of community service.


Master Gardener core training course is provided by Dallas County ISU Extension and Outreach office on Tuesdays evenings from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., but will start, Thursday, September 14th through mid-November and one Saturday daytime class on Oct. 7 or 21 at Iowa State University in Ames.


Three on location trainings to cover vegetables and herbs, plant propagation and houseplants and herbaceous ornamentals will be held on additional Thursday nights.