2014 Master Gardener training begins April 21

Farm Forum

Master Gardener training classes for 2014 have been scheduled. Lessons will be in a hybrid training format in two parts. The first part is a series of eight weeks of online lessons. The second part is four days of in-person hands on training. The online lessons will start April 21, 2014, and trainees will be able to study on their own schedule wherever and whenever they have Internet access. A new set of lessons will be posted each week and remain available through the entire class. Trainees taking the hybrid class in 2013 stated they liked the freedom to study at their own pace and on their own time.

Some of the class topics include basic botany, soils, turf, trees, insects, fruit, vegetables, ornamentals and weeds. All lessons are taught by SDSU faculty and Extension Field Specialists.

The hands-on portion will be held in four locations; Sioux Falls, Huron, Mission and Spearfish starting the third week of June. Trainees will learn skills in pruning, plant and insect identification, turf problems, weeds, soils and ornamental plants by doing hands on exercises.

Master Gardeners work in their community to promote and teach gardening. Opportunities include writing articles, giving talks, working at fair booths, helping in community and school gardens, teaching and answering garden questions. The training gives a well-rounded education preparing them to help their communities. In 2013, Master Gardeners contributed almost 10,000 hours, worth over $160,000 to our communities.

Training costs $160 with 50 hours of volunteer payback during the first two years after training. Applications and payment must be received no later than April 11, 2014.

For further information, application forms and schedules contact Mary Roduner, SDSU Extension Consumer Horticulture Field Specialist at or 605-394-1722.