We're pleased you are interested in the MSU Extension Master Gardener Program (MGP) and trust it will be a rich and rewarding experience for you. This class will be held on Thursdays, August 28th - December 4th, from 4:30 pm - 8:30 pm at the NMU Learning Resource Center, Tracy Avenue, Room 109, Marquette, MI  49855. The cost of the 13-week program is $300, which includes the 1,000-page training manual.

Access to World Class Gardening Knowledge. The MSU Extension Master Gardener Program connects gardeners across the state to MSU's faculty and resources. Participants have access to information generated at one of the nation's top plant science teaching and research universities and the chance to use this knowledge to improve their communities and enrich their lives.

Master Gardener volunteers start by completing a 13-session practical curriculum ground in university research. This training consists of approximately 45 hours of training with classes on plant science, soil science, integrated pest management, diagnostics, annuals and perennials, woody ornamentals, lawns, vegetables, small fruits, tree fruits, household and nuisance pests and gardening practices to protect water quality. Participants must commit to attend all the training sessions and complete all quizzes and the final (open book) exam with an overall score of at least 80%. Missed classes (up to two) may be made up in other locations or through viewing approved recorded sessions.

An Opportunity to Serve.  After completing the training, Master Gardener trainees must complete 40 hours of horticulture-related service within one year to earn their Master Gardener certification. Through these volunteer activities educating others, trainees extend their classroom knowledge to their community. Examples of volunteer projects and service may include:  

  • Working with students to design an elementary school garden
  • Creating a horticulture therapy program at a senior center.
  • Helping a neighborhood association create an urban garden.
  • Staffing plant clinics.
  • Designing and caring for gardens at senior centers, parks and other public sites.
  • Teaching others how to garden.
  • Establishing vegetable gardens to meet local nutritional needs.
  • Sharing environmentally-friendly gardening practices at community events.
  • Beautifying community sites for special events or community activities that attract local residents and tourists.

To maintain your certified Master Gardebner status in subsequent years, you will be required annually to complete 5 education and 15 volunteer hours as well as a 4-step re-certification process (which includes a $20 re-certification fee).

Enrollment. To enroll in the Master Gardening training, please complete the registration and agreement forms. (There is an online application and registration payment of $300 for this training.) Prior to engaging in volunteer activities, trainees may be interviewed by current Master Gardeners and/or staff.  Depending on local requirements, trainees may also need to undergo a criminal background check before they volunteer.

Class Cancellation Policy
MSUE reserves the right to cancel any class if the minimum participant levels are not met.  Registrants will receive a full refund as follows and may re-register for a future class:

  • Credit card payments - a credit will be issued to your credit card for the amount paid.
  • Payment by check - MSU will prepare and mail you a check for the amount paid. This process takes about two weeks after the refund has been requested.

Registration and Payments

  • Online registrations must be complete by August 21st or earlier.
  • In the rare event that a registration is accepted after the due date, an additional $25 fee will be assessed to cover registration processing and the Master Gardener manual shipping costs.
  • Your class slot is not reserved until payment in full is received and processed by MSU.
  • Your registration will be cancelled if payment in full is not received by the specified payment due date for your form of payment (i.e. check or credit card).
    • Check Due Date: Postmarked by August 7th, 2014 to allow for mailing and processing by the August 21st deadline.
    • Credit Card Due Date: Submitted August 21st, 2014.
  • You have the option of canceling your Master Gardener training registration at any time.  Refunds will be issued per the Refund Policy.

Refund Policy

  • A full refund, less a $25 processing fee, will be issued for any registration cancelled prior to five business days before the class start date.
  • No refund will be issued for any registration cancelled within five business days of the class start date.
  • No refund will be issued for any registration cancelled after the class has started. This manual is for certified Master Gardeners and as such must be returned.


Michigan State University is committed to providing equal opportunity for participation in all programs, services and activities. Accommodations for persons with disabilities may be requested by contacting the event contact two weeks prior to the start of the event. Requests received after this date will be honored whenever possible.

Contact Information

For more information contact Rebecca Krans at kransr@msu.edu or 906-875-0606906-875-0606.