Officials from the Colorado State University Extension Office said they’re pleased to again offer the San Miguel Basin Colorado Master Gardener Course in Norwood, and this year at the Lone Cone Library in Norwood.  

The Master Gardener Program is a nationally-respected gardening course and volunteer program.  

“Our local course is tailored to growing in mountain and high desert gardening conditions in Colorado,” Director Yvette Henson said. “We have been offering this course locally since 2008 and are very pleased with how it has developed to meet the needs of our local participants.”

This time, the course will be meeting in the evenings, on Tuesdays and Thursdays, from 6 to 9 p.m. Class begins Jan. 21 and runs through April 9. 

Henson said core topics covered in the course are botany, soils, mountain gardening, season extension, vegetables, small fruits, trees, shrubs and herbaceous plants, lawn care, insects, disease and weed management and diagnostics.  

“We will also have two to four optional classes such as a fruit tree planting and pruning field trip, plant propagation and one with Dr. Whitney Cranshaw, CSU’s Entomologist,” Henson said.   

The class will use different modes of class delivery, which allows for delivering classes locally without the need for extensive student or instructor travel. Five topics will be done online “at home,” four classes will be taught in-person, and three will be taught live via ZOOM in the classroom.  

There will also be eight hands-on labs on Thursdays. 

Upon completion of 80 percent of the classes and 50 hours of volunteer service, trainees will receive certification as Colorado Master Gardeners. Trainees complete their volunteer hours by working as volunteer staff with the local Extension Office on various projects. This allows them to share their horticultural expertise and promote research-based gardening practices in our area.  

The cost for this option is $170, and scholarships are available.  

However, if participants choose to waive the 50-hour volunteer commitment and participate only in the training portion of the program, they will not receive certification as a Colorado Master Gardener, but will instead receive a Colorado Gardener Certificate. This option is available for $530 

More information on the program, including applications, is posted on the Colorado State University Extension Office’s website at www.sanmiguel.colostate.edu.  

Those interested in taking the class can apply online at cmg.extension.colostate.edu/about/become-a-colorado-master-gardener-2/.  The public can also call Henson directly at 327-4393 or visit the office, which is located across from the San Miguel County Fairgrounds.  

“We would like all applications for the volunteer track by Jan. 17 in order to process and interview before classes begin,” Henson said. 

Anyone wanting to take the class with a disability for which they’d seek an accommodation should notify Henson by email at yvette.Henson@colostate.eduat least 30 days before classes start.