The University of Arizona

College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

Improving Lives, Communities and the Economy

How do I become a Maricopa County Master Gardener?

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Master Gardener Training classes are taught by University of Arizona Cooperative Extension faculty, industry professionals and other horticulture experts. The program teaches the fundamentals of selecting, installing, and maintaining healthy, appropriate landscapes and gardens for the Arizona low desert.

Class Topics include:

  • Botany
  • Plant Problem Diagnosis
  • Soils
  • Ornamentals
  • Pest Management
  • Fruits
  • Vegetables and Herbs
  • Plant Propagation
  • Turf
  • Desert-Adapted Landscape Plants
  • Cacti and Succulents
  • Composting
  • Landscape Design
  • Irrigation and Landscape Watering

Training sessions are held at the Maricopa County Cooperative Extension building located at 4341 E. Broadway Road, Phoenix, AZ 85040.

Classes meet once a week for 17 consecutive weeks.

Two training sessions per year are offered. A Spring session is held from January through May and a Fall session is held July through November. Classes are three hours long and meet once a week for 17 consecutive weeks. Classes are most often held Tuesday mornings from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. 

NOTE: We do offer an evening class every other Fall session. The next evening class will take place this upcoming Fall of 2018.  

To successfully complete the initial training participants must attend all classes and donate 20 hours of volunteer service hours to the Master Gardener program. To become a Certified Master Gardener, participants must complete the initial training class and donate an additional 30 hours of volunteer service within one year of initial training. There are a wide variety of volunteer opportunities made available during training. Volunteer opportunities include answering landscaping and gardening questions, planning and managing events, working with school and community gardens and program administrative support. To remain a Certified Master Gardener after the first year of initial certification, an annual donation of 25 volunteer hours and 12 continuing education hours is required per calendar year.

Who Should Apply to be a Master Gardener Volunteer

Anyone with an interest in environmentally responsible landscaping and gardening in the low desert AND volunteering as a University of Arizona, Master Gardener program ambassador to the teach others the same can apply for the Master Gardener program. There are routinely more applicants for the program than available class seats. Selection is not based on first-come-first-serve, but rather a demonstration of a history or willingness to volunteer, a level of specific skills and knowledge of value to the program, and your agreement of program policies, missions, and the University of Arizona's Designated Campus Colleague (DCC) Agreement.  

Please note specific session dates and deadlines on each session's application.​

Fall Session:

Dates: July 17 - November 6, 2018

Time: 6:00pm - 9:00pm

Location: Maricopa County Cooperative Extension 

                 4341 E. Broadway Rd., Phoenix, AZ 85040

Tuition: $275.00 is due on July 17, 2018 (Class 1) Cash or Checks ONLY.

              Checks should be made payable to: The University of Arizona. Credit cards are not accepted.

Contact Yvonne Cooper or Amber Jones for further questions.  


*This is a competitive application process -- submitting an application does NOT guarantee acceptance.

Persons with a disability may request a reasonable accommodation, such as sign language interpreter, by contacting the Master Gardener Program Coordinator, 602-827-8200. Requests should be made as early as possible to allow time to arrange the accommodation.