- Author: Valerie Borel
There is still plenty of time to sign up for one of the five fantastic garden tours that showcase some of the finest gardens in Southern California. Four day-long tours are offered Aug. 22, and one half-day tour is scheduled the morning of Aug. 23 which concludes in time to attend the welcome and enjoy the engaging key note speakers. The UC Master Gardener Conference tours were designed to give participants a behind-the-scenes look at how these gardens operate and have the opportunity to meet garden curators and UC Master Gardeners who are involved with these gardens. Come and learn a little about the history of these beautiful locations in both Los Angeles County and Orange County.
- Author: Missy Gable
It's reappointment time for the UC Master Gardener Program! Before the reappointment process begins we would like to say thank you. Our dedicated volunteers are the heart of the UC Master Gardener Program and we couldn't make such an incredible impact in our communities without you.
We hope you consider joining us as a volunteer again this upcoming program year. If the answer is yes, just follow the simple steps to reappointment below. Reappointment starts June 1 and is completed in the Volunteer Management System (VMS). Questions about reappointment? Contact your Program Coordinator, Advisor or County Director.
Step One: Select “Complete Agreement Now” in VMS
- Log into VMS, vms.ucanr.edu
- Select “Complete Agreement Now” from prompt box at top of VMS home screen
Step Two: Complete all three sections to fulfill county requirements for participation
Step Three: Verify Date Completed Displays and Print a Copy for your Records
Quick Tips and FAQ's:
Who must complete the reappointment process?
The Appointment process is mandatory for all UCCE Master Gardeners / Master Food Preservers, including:
- Limited Active
- Gold Badge
- Platinum Badge
How many hours do I need to volunteer for reappointment?
The minimum hours required to remain a certified UCCE Master Gardener / UCCE Master Food Preserver are:
- 25 hours - Volunteer
- 12 hours - Continuing education
Note: First year UCCE Master Gardeners / UCCE Master Food Preservers are required to complete a minimum of 50 volunteer hours (no continuing education requirement) before the next certification cycle.
What is the date range for calculating hours for reappointment?
The program year is July 1-June 30th. Hours currently being reported during the reappointment period are from July 1, 2016-June 30, 2017.
Where do I send my payment?
That statewide office does not collect fees or payment directly from volunteers for reappintment. Please check with your county coordinator, director or advisor about fees and where and how to submit payment.
- Author: Judy McClure
Featuring breathtaking views of the Long Beach waterfront and additional floor space the 2017 UC Master Gardener Conference MarketPlace is a fun and profitable way for counties to raise funds for their local program needs.
Participation is easy for everyone
- Short application process, no need to provide sales details now!
- Ample room for your display table and display racks.
- Table and table cover provided.
- Secure room eliminates daily setup and takedown.
- MarketPlace is readily accessible by approx. 1,000 shoppers.
- UC Master Gardeners are eager to support each other's programs. We love to shop!
- Shopping is easy; credit cards, cash and checks will be accepted.
- An on-site private shipping vendor opens the possibility to increased sales.
- All UC ANR financial paperwork taken care of by the MarketPlace Committee.
- No overhead costs.
- Assistance from UC ANR Program Support Unit guarantees swift transfer of profits.
How to participate
Reserve your table now! Monday, May 15 is the deadline for Program Coordinators, Advisors or Volunteer Leader to submit the short application.
Items for sale
Shoppers especially enjoy the opportunity to purchase items unique to your county and pieces handcrafted by volunteers.
Popular items at previous conferences include:
- Jewelry,earrings and lapel pins
- Aprons – adorned with the UC Master Gardener logo, lace or appliques
- Garden art, plant markers and gloves
- Wall art and books
Remember, the holiday shopping season officially starts this Aug. 22-25 in Long Beach. Contact your Program Coordinator, Advisor or Volunteer Leader to become part of the fun.
Program Coordinator Sacramento County,
Phone: (916) 875-6719
(Please include your county name with all correspondence)
- Author: Marcy Sousa
There's still time to send us your best work!
Search for Excellence is a statewide competition designed to recognize outstanding counties and volunteers for projects that support the mission of the Master Gardeners Program. This competition is a unique opportunity to celebrate and share our accomplishments, by showcasing the tremendous talent of Master Gardeners throughout the state in creating innovative outreach programs. This year the stakes have been raised and the prizes are bigger than ever before!
The extending deadline means programs have more time to submit their best work and allow those who did not previously consider this opportunity a chance to assemble an application. The extended deadline is May 12, 2017 by midnight. Please visit the 2017 Search for Excellence website for guidelines and application details.
Need inspiration? Take a look back at the 2014 Search for Excellence Winners
First Place: Riverside County – Gold Miners
“There's Gold in them der hills!” Riverside County is a big county, stretching from the Los Angeles metro area to the Colorado River. The challenge was how to better fulfill our mission of educating the community of Riverside County on sustainable gardening practices. The answer – “Gold Miners.” The county was divided into nine geographic areas with a Master Gardener in each area actively pursuing volunteering opportunities. Since 2011, we have increased the presence of Master Gardeners throughout the county, giving Master Gardener opportunities to volunteer closer to home and increase the number of people who are Master Gardeners from the entire county.
Second Place: Santa Clara County – South County Teaching and Demonstration Garden – Demonstration Garden Category
Third Place: Orange County – Composting/Worm Composting Video Series
If you think one of your county projects is a candidate, let your Master Gardener Program Coordinator or leader know about it!
(Please include county name in subject line for all email communications)
Southern California (San Luis Obispo, Kern, San Bernardino, and south)
Program Coordinator, San Diego
Northern California (Monterey, Kings, Tulare, Inyo and north)
Program Coordinator, San Joaquin
- Author: Melissa G. Womack
During fiscal year 2014 –15 the UC Master Gardener Program had 6,055 active volunteers who were dedicated to extending UC research-based home horticulture information to the public.
County-based programs range in size from 13 to 315 volunteers - but the one thing they all have in common is their passion for horticulture, the desire to learn and willingness to share their knowledge with local communities!
From July 1, 2014 to June 30, 2015 UC Master Gardener volunteers donated 398,150 volunteer hours and more than 4.6 million volunteer hours have been donated since the program's inception.
If we want to think about this monetarily (and who doesn't?!), the value of this time to UC ANR comes in at more than $10.7 million that's equivalent to 191 full time employees!
Volunteering for their communities is not the only way UC Master Gardeners spend their time. Last year 88,300 continuing education hours were logged as UC Master Gardeners worked to keep themselves informed about new or advanced horticultural topics and trends.
A sincere thank you to our incredible group of volunteers, for sharing your passion and valuable time to the UC Master Gardener Program!