The Pella Chronicle
---- — Six Marion County residents recently completed their coursework for becoming Certified Master Gardeners. Steve Simpson, Teri Buitenwerf, R.P. Kunzman, Steve Evans, Jackie Schmitt, and Joy Pierce all finished 40 hours of instruction in November. The program provides selected volunteers training on many aspects of gardening. In exchange for training, Master Gardeners share their time and knowledge in approved projects within their local communities. Training consists of 40 hours of Web-based broadcasts and face-to-face instruction at extension offices and on the Iowa State University campus. After training, participants must complete a one-year Master Gardener internship consisting of 40 hours of approved volunteer service projects. In subsequent years to maintain active Master Gardener status an additional 12 hours of volunteer service and 6 hours of educational updates are required annually. Marion County currently has 37 certified, active Master Gardeners.
Winter training will be held in both Mahaska and Lucas Counties beginning in January. (The next set of classes for Marion County is tentatively set for fall of 2015.) For more information about signing up for the classes, contact Karen Ackley at firstname.lastname@example.org or 641-842-2014.