As a longtime teacher in the Tiffin City Schools, always planning on retiring some day, I had some goals for retirement - more time on the family farm, gardening and taking the Master Gardener classes.
I came to know Janet Del Turco when I was a quiz bowl coach; I enjoyed reading her column every Friday. So, after retiring in June 2006, I took the Ohio State University Master Gardener classes which started in January 2007. I did not even realize at first that after taking the classes and performing community service, I could become a member of the OSU Seneca Master Gardeners organization. This became a marvelous experience.
Not only did I gain a tremendous amount of horticultural knowledge, I also learned (and continue to learn) from the other master gardeners. The two purposes of the organization are community service and education for the community. The Seneca Master Gardeners are a group of dynamic, down to earth people-some of the nicest people I have ever known. We have fun and work together to serve the community and to provide education for the community.
The OSU Seneca Master Gardeners provide 4-H awards and judging, a horticultural craft for Earth Day and the Miller Conservation Farm in the fall. Also, we maintain the flowerbeds at the entrance to the fairgrounds and provide horticultural programs (at no charge) for the public, etc., and so much more.
In January 2014, the OSU Seneca Master Gardeners will again run a Master Gardener class. These classes are taught by experts, most of whom will be OSU professors. To register for these classes, please call the OSU Extension Office at (419) 447-0722 and ask for an application. The cost of the classes is $175 and classes will be on Wednesday from January through March. The application needs to be returned by Dec. 31 with a nonrefundable $50 fee.
One does not need a degree or great horticultural knowledge to become a master gardener. A desire to learn and work with other people are quite sufficient. Please join us! If you have questions, please call me at (567) 230-0234. Becoming a Master Gardener was one of my best decisions.