Master Gardener Program
Nassau County

 

Master Gardeners tour Savannah gardens.
Photo Credit:   Bea Walker

History

The rapid urban growth in many areas of the United States coupled with increased interest in the environment and home gardening has prompted ever-increasing numbers of homeowner questions to County Extension Agents (Educators).  Many of these questions are seasonal in nature and are relatively easy to answer assuming one has horticulture training.
                     
In 1972, an innovative Extension Agent (educator) in the state of Washington reasoned that well-trained volunteers could respond to many of the everyday homeowner questions freeing him and his colleagues for more technical and difficult problems.  Volunteers, such as Extension Homemakers and 4-H Leaders had always been a part of the Extension Service but never in the areas of homeowner horticulture.  The Extension Agent (educator) selected, trained and certified volunteers as Master Gardeners. They soon succeeded in meeting his desired objectives and, in fact, they exceeded his expectations.  Therefore, the Master Gardener Volunteer Program began.
     
Since that time, the Master Gardener Program has grown and is now active in over 30 states.  Florida's Program began in 1979 and currently is found in more than 46 Counties.  The program has become a tremendous success and has been offered in Nassau County since 1994. The Florida Master Gardener Program is sponsored by the University of Florida's Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS), of which the Cooperative Extension Service is a part.

Master Gardener volunteers are trained by County Horticultural Extension agents and are required to serve 75 volunteer hours  year one of their accreditation and 35 volunteer hours annually in all subsequent years,  to maintain their certification as Master Gardeners.  For information on the Master Gardener program and application requirements, contact Becky Jordi, Horticultural Extension Agent at 530-6350, or rljordi@ufl.edu

Become a Master Gardener 2017

Upcoming Events

Biannual Master Gardener Plant Sale

Master Gardener Information

Projects

Habitat for Humanity
Ag Extravaganza
Ag Literacy Day
Palm Garden
Herb Garden
Citrus Garden
Rose Garden
Demonstration Garden
Field Research Projects
Spotlight on Nassau Gardens
Rain Barrels and Micro-Irrigation
Environmental clean-ups 2-3 times annually
Parking Lot Renovation and Expansion Project of Historic Courthouse in Fernandina Beach

Programs

Crash Course in Florida Gardening
Landscape Matters
Demonstration Garden Educational Tours
Butterfly Experience

Master Gardeners in the News

Awards

2016 Florida Association of Natural Resources Professionals (FANREP) - Mid-career Leadership Award - Rebecca Jordi

2016 Florida Association of County Agriculture Agents Search for Excellence Team Award - National Finalist - Rebecca Jordi

2015 Florida Master Gardener Outstanding Team Award: Fruit Garden Team

2014 Nassau County Farm Bureau "Good Neighbor Award" - Rebecca Jordi

2012 FACAA Communications Award

2012 National Finalist, the NACAA's  Search for Excellence in Landscape Horticulture - Rebecca Jordi

2010 Association of Natural Resource Extension Professionals (ANREP) Gold award for "Computerized Graphic Presentation/Slide Set - Rebecca Jordi

2009-2011 Forest Health Improvement Initiative Grant from the Division of Forestry for the State of Florida - Rebecca Jordi

2008 Florida Master Gardener Award of Excellence: Written Mass Communications

2008 Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties (NACo) UF/IFAS Nassau County Demonstration Garden

2008 State of Florida Winner Search for Excellence in Landscape Horticulture Program conducted by the National Association of County Agriculture Agents (NACAA) - Rebecca Jordi

2008 Florida Legislature Award for Superior Accomplishment in Academic Personnel - Rebecca Jordi

2008 Computerized Graphic Presentation Silver Award - Rebecca Jordi

2007 Florida Outstanding Master Gardener of the Year - Bea Walker

2007 Florida Extension Award of Excellence for Extension Awareness - Nassau County Master Gardener Program

2006 Extension Professional Association Young Professional of the Year - Rebecca Jordi

2006 State of Florida Winner Search for Excellence in Landscape Horticulture Program conducted by the National Association of County Agriculture Agents (NACAA) - Rebecca Jordi

2006 UF/IFAS Grand Image Award - Nassau County Demonstration Garden

2006 Keep Nassau Beautiful "We Noticed" Award for month of March - Nassau County Demonstration Garden

 

 

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