Gardening Questions? Ask a Master Gardener Volunteer.

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With the arrival of the spring season, people are ready to start working in their home landscapes, lawns and gardens. Often people have questions about how to care for plants and deal with gardening problems. This is where the Wayne County Extension Master Gardener Volunteers provide several ways to help answer your questions.

An Extension Master Gardener is a volunteer for N.C. Cooperative Extension. Many county extension offices have a county Extension Master Gardener Volunteer program. Volunteers are selected through an application process, complete a 40-hour training program and complete a 40-hour internship. Once the internship is complete, Extension Master Gardener Volunteers remain active by completing a minimum of 20 hours of volunteer service and 10 hours of continuing education each year.

The mission of the Extension Master Gardenersm program is to connect people to horticulture through science-based education and outreach that empowers North Carolinians to cultivate healthy plants, landscapes, ecosystems, and communities. The information Extension Master Gardeners provide are ones that guide homeowners in making environmentally sound decisions in their landscapes and gardens. In Wayne County, we have an active group of 25 volunteers who assist our local Extension Office in reaching that mission.

One of the most important activities Wayne County Extension Master Gardener Volunteers do is provide a plant clinic service at our office for Wayne County residents. The plant clinic is open every Monday and Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. from April through August.  Extension Master Gardener Volunteers are in the plant clinic during these times to assist the public with gardening questions. One of the great things about the plant clinic is that volunteers have been trained to provide educational gardening information from N.C. Cooperative Extension that is practical and reliable. Volunteers will utilize resources through the N.C. Cooperative Extension to determine an answer and best solution. Volunteers accept gardening questions related to home landscapes, lawns, vegetable garden, and tree fruits. However, there are a few types of questions they are not trained to handle, including: indoor pests, commercial horticulture, hazardous tree evaluation, or medical/legal plant questions.

Wayne County Extension Master Gardener Volunteer assist someone with identifying a weed in their lawn.

The plant clinic is a free resource for Wayne County residents who have home gardening questions. One can reach the Wayne County Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Plant Clinic by phone at 919-731-1433, e-mail or stopping by the Wayne County Extension Office at The Maxwell Regional Agricultural & Convention Center (3114 Wayne Memorial Drive, Goldsboro). Samples and/or pictures related to gardening questions are encouraged to assist in diagnosing possible plant problems.