Kent County Master Gardeners to start monthly column

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Hello from the Kent County Master Gardener volunteers!

We will be featuring articles in the Delaware State News and its monthly publications beginning in April. Each month we will share helpful research-based information on a variety of sustainable gardening practices to assist local home gardeners. We will also share information for our current online workshops and events, and links to websites and publications with helpful gardening tips.

The Master Gardener Volunteer Program is a nationally recognized program and can be found in all 50 states. Delaware launched its volunteer program in the spring of 1986. Delaware Master Gardeners are vital links in an educational chain that begins with research from the University of Delaware, Delaware State University and the horticultural industry. Delaware Cooperative Extension specialists translate this research into practical, usable methods that can be used by Delaware home gardeners.

Master Gardeners play a key role in distributing this information about environmentally friendly practices for the home gardener.

Within the state program, the Kent County Master Gardeners have 40 active volunteers that contributed more than 2,300 volunteer hours last year to the Delaware Cooperative Extension’s home horticulture program by working on projects such as the Master Gardener Helpline, teaching or assisting with workshops, planning the plant sale and fundraising for scholarships.

The Master Gardener Helpline is a vital service provided to Delaware residents. Volunteers and extension personnel answer questions on a variety of home horticulture topics.

The helpline is a free service, open from April through October, that can provide accurate identification of insect and plant specimens and diagnosis of plant diseases to help provide solutions to your gardening issues.

You can find your local helpline office by visiting here.

Our free virtual gardening workshops have been extremely popular and are filling up fast. You can visit our website to register for upcoming workshops here.

The Kent County Master Gardeners offer a scholarship program for students who have been Kent County residents for at least two years prior to the application date and must be enrolled in, or have been accepted by, an accredited college or university to study plant and soil science or a horticulture-related field.

The Master Gardeners raise the money for the scholarship during a plant sale, which is typically held on the last Saturday in April at the Delaware State University greenhouse.

The deadline for the application is Friday, April 16. To find out more about our scholarship, visit here.

If you are interested in becoming a Master Gardener volunteer, we will be accepting application for the fall of 2021. To find out more about the Master Gardener program in Delaware, please visit our website.

We are excited to start this new column and hope you will find our sustainable gardening practices useful in your own home garden. If you have any questions, please send them to our email address kentcountymastergardeners@gmail.com.