The purpose of MGAPC is to promote community awareness and participation in programs related to horticulture.
The program was started in 1972 in Washington State. New Jersey held its first class in 1984. In Passaic County, the first class was held in 1996. Since then, thousands of Master Gardeners have been trained throughout the state and given hundreds of thousands of volunteer hours in service to the residents of the Garden State.
Master gardeners are trained volunteers who assist Rutgers in its mission to deliver horticulture programs and information. Elaine Fogerty is the MGAPC advisor and Passaic County Agricultural Assistant.
Passaic County classes are held Thursday mornings, September through May, in Wayne. The 3 hour lessons - mostly taught by Rutgers faculty and staff - range in topics from turf renovation and general entomology to propagation and understanding soil. The cost of training is $250. Seventy hours of volunteer time (10 of it devoted to the helpline) are required to become certified. Active master gardeners have 25 hours of service and 10 hours of continuing education yearly.
Anyone with an interest in gardening and a commitment to volunteer service can become a Master Gardener. No previous education or training is required.
To apply for the next class - call 973-305-5740.