Home & Garden

Press Releases

Share Your Love of Gardening with the Union County Community


Have you ever wanted to take your gardening hobby to the next level? Here is your chance. The Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Union County will train and certify you as part of their Master Gardener Program. Refine your gardening skills and channel your inner green thumb by applying for this program by Aug. 31.

“If you are looking for expert guidance on community, school, and home gardening, I encourage you to consider participating in the Master Gardeners program,” said Freeholder Chairman Bruce Bergen. “The Master Gardeners program offers a fun and exciting experience to share your passion for gardening and help build a stronger Union County.”

Almost 900 Union County residents have become certified Master Gardener volunteers since the program began 30 years ago.

Sign Up for E-News

The volunteers plan and run community service projects throughout Union County.

The centerpiece of the Master Gardeners community service efforts is the Union County Demonstration Garden, an elaborate complex that provides a platform for the group’s educational programs, summer camp visits and many other projects and services. It includes a large vegetable garden that yields thousands of pounds of fresh produce for donation to local food pantries.

Once accepted into the Master Gardener program, trainees commit to attending class every Tuesday from 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. beginning in early October and ending next May.

The training course is taught by Rutgers University faculty. It includes basic botany, entomology, flower gardening, integrated pest management, pesticide safety, plant pathology, soil testing and fertilizers, tree maintenance, turf management, vegetable gardening and wildlife management.

As part of the training requirement, participants provide 60 hours of volunteer service working in with one of the Master Gardeners gardening committees. Successful graduates become Certified Rutgers Master Gardeners upon completion of their volunteer commitment, which may be fulfilled within a 12-18 month period.

The Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Union County is funded in part by the Board of Chosen Freeholders. The Master Gardner classroom session will be held at the Extension offices at the Colleen Fraser Building in the county services complex in Westfield, at 300 North Avenue East.

The Freeholders Board supports the extension with funding for administrative support and office space, and for special projects. The Demonstration Garden is located on County property in the Watchung Reservation, by the Trailside Nature and Science Center in Mountainside.

To become a Certified Rutgers Master Gardener and request an application, email Judi Laganga at jlaganga@ucnj.org or call the Extension at 908-654-9854 (ext. 2).

Applications are due to the Extension Office by August 31. A materials fee of $200 is payable upon acceptance into the program.

For all Union County programs and services visit ucnj.org, call the Public Info Line, 877-424-1234, email info@ucnj.org or use the online Contact Form.

Connect with Union County on social media.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


Winter Weather Advisory in Effect as Storm Number Three to Start Monday Night Into Tuesday

March 12, 2018

RAHWAY, NJ - While many communities are still cleaning up from the last two storms, another noreaster is on its way making it the third storm to hit the area in 10 days. 

The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory from midnight tonight until noon on Tuesday. Snow is expected to accumulate around 2 to 4 inches.

According to ABC News AccuWeather, the storm will ...

State-of-the-Art Pain Relief Therapy Now Available at Cornerstone Physical Therapy of Clark

CLARK, NJ – Cornerstone Physical Therapy Health and Wellness Center is now offering the latest technology in therapeutic pain relief with the introduction of the LightForce™ EXPi Deep Tissue Therapy Laser.  This therapy offers the highest level of pain relief available using a new and enhanced 25 watt Class IV Laser.

Laser Therapy is a surgery-free, drug-free option for ...

Union County's March For Our Lives - County Wide March Planned

March 17, 2018

March 24 at 10 a.m. Students of Union County will march to make sure that our schools are safe. The march will start at Burnet Middle School (1000 Caldwell Avenue, Union). It will end at the Union Township City Council Offices (1976 Morris Avenue, Union). All looking to protect American children by strengthening our laws and stand with the victims of all shootings inside places of education, are ...

Union County 4-H Club Reaches Out to Help after Hurricane Maria

Student members of the Union County 4-H Variety Club reached across local and state borders to help displaced pets earlier this year. Through their “4-H for our 4 Pawed Friends” community service project, they collected donations to help St. Hubert’s Animal Welfare Center in Madison after the organization sheltered more than 700 pets in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria.

A ...