Purdue Extension Master Gardener Program in Whitley County

The Purdue Extension Master Gardener Program trains gardening enthusiasts as volunteers to assist Purdue Extension with home horticulture education in Indiana communities. Purdue Extension Master Gardeners are "Helping Others Grow!"  Learn more about the state Extension Master Gardener program here.

In Whitley County, Extension Master Gardeners have a vibrant local association that meets monthly to discuss volunteer projects and learn something new in an educational time. Members also volunteer in the community and they provide several premier events that offer advanced training opportunities. Check out their website and Facebook page. See below. 

If you want to join our team of green thumb volunteers, visit our "We Want You!" page to learn concise details about the first steps in that journey.

Contact Us

John E. Woodmansee

Extension Educator, Agriculture and Natural Resources &

Master Gardener Coordinator - Whitley County



Become an Extension Master Gardener!

We want YOU! Learn how you can become an Extension Master Gardener.

Find out more

EMG-Brand-2-color.pngThe Program

The Purdue Extension Master Gardener Program is an integral part of the Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service and provides the residents of Indiana a chance to grow. Under the guidance and support of Purdue Extension, selected residents of a county voluntarily begin a training program specifically designed to prepare them to help others grow.

The program provides a learning framework for participants to increase their knowledge on a wide variety of horticultural subjects.

When these volunteers complete the 14- to 16-week in-person Basic Training program* (one 3-hour class per week) and pass an examination (at least a 70% score), they are then identified by the county and Purdue as Master Gardener Interns. The Master Gardener Interns are expected to complete 40 volunteer service hours, representing the Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service. They help others grow by sharing knowledge while providing leadership and service in educational gardening activities within their communities, under the guidance of the local Program Coordinator. Visit our "We Want YOU!" page for concise details about becoming one of our newest Extension Master Gardeners.

When the minimum volunteer commitment has been fulfilled, volunteers are then certified as Extension Master Gardeners. Master Gardeners remain active by completing six hours of educational training and twelve hours of volunteer service per year. Advanced levels of certification are offered to help with the recognition and retention of volunteers.

If you are interested in more information about the Extension Master Gardener Program in Whitley County, refer to the informational brochure.

Also, if you would like local information or are part of a local community group that would like to have a Master Gardener teach your group about a gardening topic, please contact the Purdue Extension office in Whitley County at 260-244-7615 or jwoodman@purdue.edu. Please allow plenty of time to make arrangements.

2023 marked the 25th year for Extension Master Gardeners to be active in Whitley County. Click here for more information.

whitley county Extension master gardeners

Whitley County Master Gardeners typically meet on the first Thursday of each month starting at 6:30 p.m. Refer to the Whitley County Extension calendar, or feel free to call the office at 260-244-7615.

Find Master Gardeners of Whitley County (local association) on Facebook and "like" the page, or check out their website

Become an Extension Master Gardener

We want you! Become a Master Gardener - watch a short video. And, please visit our "We Want YOU!" page dedicated to how you can apply to take the next Basic Training class*, the first step to joining our wonderful team of Extension Master Gardener volunteers!

*Alternatively, a state-wide virtual training program may be available, with a 2-hour virtual instruction section held each week for 14 weeks, plus a one-hour "county connection time" weekly. At the conclusion of the training, a final exam is administered.


  • Master Gardeners of Whitley County (local association website)
  • Master Gardeners of Whitley County Facebook page
  • Report Volunteer or Education Hours in Master Gardener Manager (online reporting system)
  • Purdue Master Gardener Program Policy Guide (MG-5-W) Revised Oct. 2019, policies effective Jan. 1, 2020
    • New volunteer application: see Appendix B (also available below under "Related Files")
    • Annual agreement for current Master Gardeners: see Appendix C (normally done through online system)
  • Guidance for current Extension Master Gardeners on educational programs involving (targeting) minors:
    • See the document explaining the extra required certification as a Purdue Extension volunteer {See section: "APPROVED VOLUNTEERS WITH PURDUE EXTENSION (NOT 4-H Volunteers)", good for 2 years}. The link to the training is within the document.
    • Educational programs involving (targeting) minors must be registered with Purdue University a minimum of 1 month prior to the event. Contact your local Purdue Extension staff (County Master Gardener Coordinator), who must register the program, well in advance of this deadline.

Upcoming Events:

  • June 22, 2024: Whitley County Master Gardeners' Garden Walk in the Tri-Lakes area. General brochure/info
  • July 15, 2024: Master Gardener Seminars at the Whitley County 4-H Fair
  • If you are interested in the next (or a future) Extension Master Gardener Basic Training class, please call our office at 260-244-7615 to leave your name and contact information so that we can send you detailed information when available. See "We Want YOU" page for more details.

Related Files: