UC Master Gardeners, Santa Clara County, CA
University of California
UC Master Gardeners, Santa Clara County, CA

Becoming a UC Master Gardener

Are you a Santa Clara County resident who

  • wants to learn more about science-based, sustainable gardening practices
  • would enjoy sharing that knowledge with the home gardening public?

Here are answers to frequent questions about the program.

What are UC Master Gardeners?

  • We are volunteers who have been trained to educate the public on science-based sustainable horticulture practices.
  • We are part of the University of California Cooperative Extension and provide a link between the University and the residents of Santa Clara County.
  • We are committed to educating people on best practices in home horticulture, pest management, and sustainable landscaping.

What do we look for in Master Gardener candidates?

  • Interest in learning science-based gardening practices
  • Enthusiasm for passing that knowledge on to others
  • Passion for volunteering
  • Organizational and leadership skills to support and grow the program

Applicants do not need to be accomplished gardeners already, but simply have the desire and willingness to learn more and share the information.

What happens during training?

Soil class by Hank Morales

  • There are weekly classes, which include reading and home study assignments.
  • Trainees are expected to attend every session. Planned absences (such as vacations) are not allowed.
  • Classes are taught by University of California instructors, outside experts, and Master Gardener volunteers.
  • Topics include Soils, Botany, Irrigation, Edible Gardening, Fruit and Landscape Trees, Plant Diseases, Integrated Pest Management, Extension Training, and much more.

What do UC Master Gardeners do?

Farm stand at MCP by Hank Morales
We educate and assist the public through a wide variety of community outreach programs: 

In exchange for education and certification, first-year Master Gardeners are required to volunteer 50 hours during the first 12 months. After that, yearly recertification requires a minimum of 25 volunteer hours and 12 continuing education hours.


Learn about the application process


Class of 2023

Webmaster Email: webmaster-mgsantaclara@ucanr.edu