`The purpose of the Washington State University Extension Master Gardener Program is to train volunteers to be effective community educators in gardening and environmental stewardship. Master Gardeners provide information generated from research at WSU and other university systems.

Successful applicants must complete the online training course; attend scheduled classes; pass quizzes and exams; and volunteer the required number of hours in approved educational activities.

The Master Gardener training program includes a comprehensive 60-hour course in such topics as entomology, plant physiolgy, composting, weed management, tree fruit, pruning, integrated pest management and more.

Trained Master Gardeners serve the community as home horticulture advisers by volunteering 40 hours of community service the first year, and 25 hours annually thereafter. Goals of the Master Gardener Program include:

• Promoting gardening and agriculture land use.

• Informing the public about current best horticultural practices.

• Enhancing environmental conservation.

• Broadening local communities’ gardening expertise.

The WSU Extension Master Gardener Program is open to everyone with an interest in gardening and a willingness to use their knowledge, experience and enthusiasm to make a positive impact on their local community. Visit  mastergardener.wsu.edu/; write to WSU Extension, Okanogan County, P.O. Box 391, 149 Third Ave. N. Room 101, Okanogan, WA 98840; or call (509) 422-7245.