Tuesday, February 2, 2010

On being a masterish gardener

I spent the evening in a room full of people with widely diverse backgrounds. There was a woman born on a farm, a green agency worker, nutritionists, lawyers, an architect, a magazine publisher, young professionals from Capital Hill, a high school culinary arts teacher who won a grant to create a vegetable garden at school, lots of volunteers for different organizations, and many others. What other event could bring this motley crew together on a snowy Tuesday evening? The first day of master gardener class, of course.

Not to belabor the -ish theme, but I would prefer to consider myself a "master-ish gardener" because I'm sure that even after the two month course and 50 hours of volunteer work, there will be much to learn. I am excited to know that in order to maintain certification, master gardeners need to fulfill additional hours of volunteer work and continuing education every year. With lots of exciting projects going on in DC, I know I won't need to attach the -ish forever.

It's been an interesting day. I reach my bedtime full of excitement at this opportunity to learn and meet new people who all share a passion for gardening and concern for environment; full of maternal love as the baby of the family turns 5 after a day of birthday wishes and princessly attention (where did that pink and princess gene come from?); full of confusion after a really entertaining season premiere of LOST; and full of hope that tonight will bring lots more snow and a school (and thus work) closure tomorrow. I should go to bed reflecting on how cool it all is...but may read my assigned chapter on botany first...


  1. Congratulations in your endeavour in being a Master Gardener.
    Sounds more like a computer-game character where something like a wizard where anything you touch grows.
    Wow - that would be nice, fruits, vege and herbs to heal & nourish the nation...
    OK - I have been fantasing.
    Good luck!

  2. Oh Wendy, I am full of envy, I wish I could be by your side, taking that class. I sooo want to be a Master Gardener (at least just not on my head,lol)but the time just does not allow. Maybe when we are living up at Kilbourne Grove full time, but until then you will have to tell me everything!

  3. It is proper to get gardening skills and knowledge the formal way. Haha... but I am still going on an exploratory course... in my own little garden. Of course I wish to wrap up gardening knowhow through formal classes but that got to wait....

    Good Luck

  4. I completed the course and now I am a master gardener intern in which I have to complete my hours of volunteer service. I did enjoy the classes and learned a lot. Have fun reading. Are you as lost as I am in the show LOST? That show is so confusing! :/

  5. James - the title is kinda of computer game geeky! :)

    Deborah - I'll be sure to post my favorite tips!

    Bangchik - this is exactly why I'll be a master-ish gardener. I'm sure there's a world of knowledge that comes from hands on experience - the exploratory course!

    Amy - as I'm telling my husband, I have NO idea what's going on in LOST and at this point, I don't even care to speculate. It's sheer entertainment, and I love it.

  6. I think it's so cool that you're getting your Master Gardener certification. Congrats on taking the leap! And I do want to hear all about it. There is a bit of me who would like to do it, too... but the rest of me is not sure that's a good idea. ;)

  7. Hi Wendy~~ Good for you. Master-ish gardener, love it! I'm a 2002 graduate and kept up my hours for a few years but have since fallen behind. I thoroughly enjoyed my class and really bonded with great people. I learned more by manning the volunteer phone/desk and taking people's questions. I hope you'll keep us updated on your perspectives.

  8. Hahaha, i can't imagine that super fast training to be a master gardener. But that is right, if you will just do it continuously and internalize it, maybe it can be done! We have long years in undergraduate, few years in Masters and longer years in PhD learning most of the complexities of plants,the whys and the becauses!Yet i cannot say i am a master gardener, because i am not a hands on gardener. I may know the principles, and maybe know what is wrong with something, but with all honesty cannot claim i am a master gardener. We don't have those certificates here either. So i congratulate you for being one!

  9. It's a privilege thing to do! I hope you would the time to do the necessary volunteer work and continue the education conveniently.

  10. Wendy, good for you for starting MG training. I hope you have a better experience than I did! I did it 20+ years ago and was very disappointed/disillusioned by the teachers, the information and the other students. Surely things have improved in 20 years?!

    Actually, I know they have, since I attended a garden seminar last spring and the MGers I met were quite different than the ones I trained with. Maybe I should get re-certified. Have fun!

  11. Way to go Wendy! I am sure you and many others will benefit from this accomplishment. I applaud your efforts and wish you the best!
    Hope you have a fun birthday celebration...pink and all.

  12. Thanks ladies - I'll be sure to pass along any interesting tidbits! Lil Ned - so far I'm LOVING it. We've only had one speaker so far and he was awesome. I'm also really happy with the students. I anticipate a great experience. I will say though that I'm doing this in a city. I could not make the class more local to me because it's during the day and I work. I REALLY think it would be a completely different class of studetns, and I think that would really affect the experience.

  13. Congratulations on your Master Gardener course. Sounds very interesting and a wealth of knowledge to gain. I will surely look forward to your tips.


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