- 4 Season Garden Webinar - Vegetable Growing in Small Spaces- ORLAND PARK
Register by April 17, 2017
- 4 Season Garden Webinar - Beyond Hosta-Perennials for the Shade ORLAND PARK
Register by May 1, 2017
- 4 Season Garden Webinar - Bountiful Backyards: Berries, Brambles, and Beyond ORLAND PARK
Register by May 15, 2017
- South Suburban Cook County - School Garden Assistance
Register by December 1, 2017
- Conservation@Home Cook County Certification Application
Register by December 15, 2017
- Conservation@Home Volunteer Registration
Register by December 31, 2017
- Request a Youth Program - Cook South Suburban Master Gardeners
Register by July 1, 2018
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Read the Latest News
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- Timeline Through Landscape Design Blog
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- Gardener's Corner
Four seasons of gardening information.
- Home Yard and Garden Pest
Provides timely information on insect, weed, and plant disease pests for landscapers, arborists, lawn care professionals, golf course personnel, and garden center operators.
- Illinois Fruit and Vegetable News
A newsletter on the production of fruit and vegetable crops in Illinois.
Margaret Burns Westmeyer
Program Coordinator, Horticulture
University of Illinois Extension
4747 Lincoln Mall Drive
Matteson, IL 60443
Extension Educator, Horticulture
University of Illinois Extension
4747 Lincoln Mall Drive
Matteson, IL 60443
Cook South Suburban Master Gardeners
Master Gardener Volunteer Training and Certification Program
PLEASE NOTE: Cook South Suburban Master Gardener training will not take place in 2017. The next training is scheduled for Fall 2018. For more information e-mail Margaret Burns-Westmeyer, at email@example.com or call (708) 679-6894.
Who We Are
The Cook South Master Gardener Program focuses primarily on serving the Cook County suburban area south of Roosevelt Road. Master Gardeners are required to do the volunteering in the unit that they train with. There are affiliated but separate Master Gardener Programs for other parts of Cook County. These are in the North Suburban Cook and Chicago units.
The Master Gardener (MG) adult volunteer program is nationwide. Master Gardeners are a vital link in getting horticulture information to the public through University of Illinois Extension offices. Education is what we're all about. With no products or services to sell, Master Gardeners can provide unbiased, research-based information from the University of Illinois to the public.
Master Gardeners participate in more than 60 hours of training on botany, soils, fertilizers, vegetables, tree and small fruits, turf, landscaping weeds, diseases, insects, Integrated Pest Management, woody plants, perennials and annuals. The sessions are taught by University of illinois specialists and Extension educators and are coordinated by your local county office. The emphasis of the informationis practical, yet research driven. There are weekly quizzes as well as a final exam. Students must pass a final comprehensive exam by achieving 80% or better (open book).
Online Training Program: The Online training is not currently available due to recent developments.
Face to Face Training Program: To be held one day per week for eleven consecutive weeks in Fall 2018. The format for this training will be in-person classroom training with limited hands-on opportunities. You must be available for all eleven sessions to participate in the face-to-face training The classes will be held at various locations in/around Cook County south suburbs. Locations may include but are not limited to:
Orland Park Cultural Center, Orland Park
Sand Ridge Nature Center, South Holland
Little Red Schoolhouse, Willow Springs
Please check back for the exact training dates and locations.
2018 Face-to-Face Program: $350.00
The face-to-face training fee covers: Master Gardener training manual, Pest Management for the Home Landscape guide, supplemental handouts, administrative travel expenses, educational supplies for volunteer-led programs, certificates, class refreshments, temporary name badge, and official name badge upon graduation.
Master Gardeners give back at least 60 hours of volunteer time to the Cook South Suburban Master Gardener program within a year. After completing 60 hours of volunteer time you will become a Certified Master Gardener. As a volunteer, you are required to undergo all necessary background checks. Volunteers are responsible for recording their hours along with the demographics of their audience. Volunteering can take the form of answering questions from consumers at the "MG Help Desk" or working on special projects such as Speakers Bureau, hands-on classroom horticulture activities, leading school gardens, providing technical assistance for community gardens, worm composting demonstrations, insect petting zoo, and providing information at Farmer's Markets.
Our Public Audience
We aim to serve youth and adults of all ages and backgrounds through our public programming. Much of our programming is free or low cost and we typically bring hands-on programs to community groups and centers. University of Illinois Extension provides equal opportunities in programs and employment.
If you need reasonable accommodations to participate in this program, please contact Nancy Kreith at firstname.lastname@example.org or (708) 679-6893.
For more information e-mail Margaret Burns-Westmeyer, at email@example.com or call (708) 679-6894.
In need of MG volunteer assistance?
In exchange for this challenging educational experience, Master Gardeners are required to volunteer 60 hours, primarily to share their new knowledge and skills with the community. Master Gardeners are a dedicated group, and many choose to return to volunteer sites year after year to share their knowledge with others. Master Gardeners can provide guidance for school and community gardens, fulfill speaker requests, and answer home gardening questions. To request MG assistance, please contact Margaret Burns-Westmeyer (contact info above).
Volunteer Policy and Required Forms:
- Background Check - Extension Volunteer Reference
- Background Check - CANTS
- Background check - Convictions
- Master Gardener Course Links
A list of links for information on each topic Master Gardeners regularly use.
- Master Gardener Returning Annual Agreement
- Master Gardener Trainee / Intern Agreement
- Policies for IL Master Gardeners
- Required Non-Discrimination Form
Required - Non Discrimination Form PDF All independent projects, partner organizations and program sites must complete and return the ORIGINAL form before services will be conducted. http://web.extension.illinois.edu/cook/downloads/45568.pdf
- Volunteer Emergency Contact Information