Colorado Master Gardener Program | CMG Outreach

Colorado Master Gardener Outreach

Annually, 1,350 Colorado Master Gardener Volunteers serving in 36 county-based programs generate $1.3 million in volunteer time fostering successful gardening.

Actual outreach activities vary from county to county in response to local needs and resources. Details of local CMG Program are describe in the below links:


CMG Outreach

Colorado Master Gardener Volunteers assist CSU Extension in a variety of methods, including the following:

  • Telephones - Assist phone and walk-in clients with gardening questions and plant diagnosis at CSU Extension Offices. Front Range counties process 13,000 calls annually.

  • Plant Clinics - Assist clients with gardening questions and plant diagnosis at plant clinics held in local garden centers, farmers markets, county fairs and community events.

  • Gardening Classes - Teach or assist the instructor with local gardening classes.

  • Mass Media - In most CMG counties, CMG volunteers write weekly articles for local newspapers.

  • Electronic Media - Some county CMG programs maintain a local gardening web site.

  • Youth Gardening - Mentoring youth gardening groups, teach youth gardening classes.

  • Mentoring Community Gardening Projects - CMG volunteers serve as a technical resource for many community gardening and greening projects. However, they are not a free labor pool to maintain private or public gardens.

  • Demonstration Gardens - Work on a team to develop and maintain demonstration gardens and assist CSU Department of Horticulture and LA with garden related research.

Actual projects vary from county to county in response to local needs and resources. Contact your local CSU Extension Office for more details. Colorado Master Gardener services are intended for non-commercial, home gardeners only.

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CMG Volunteers

Colorado Master Gardener Volunteers thrive on gardening activities, enjoy learning about the latest gardening techniques, and enjoy sharing their gardening knowledge in a two-way learning atmosphere.

As volunteer staff for CSU Extension, CMG volunteers strive to foster successful gardening. Many volunteers prefer outreach efforts that provide knowledge-based information to help gardeners protect and enhance the home landscape. Other volunteers flourish with outreach efforts that use gardening as a tool to develop individuals, strengthen families, and build communities (called gardening therapy).

Educational messages focus on timely gardening issues, including the following:

  • Irrigation management and water-wise gardening
  • Pest management alternatives
  • Home food production
  • Plant Health Care (IPM)

Volunteer Commitment

To become a Colorado Master Gardener requires the following:

  • Application and acceptance into the county/area based CMG Program. For details on the application process, refer to Becoming a CMG Volunteer.
  • Completion of the CMG training course. For details on the training, refer to CMG Training.
  • 50 hours minimum volunteer work serving in the county/area CMG Program during the training year.
  • Turn in CMG Activity reports. Most counties use an on-line reporting system. Paper reports are used in a few counties and by volunteers who do not have web access.

To continue in the program after the training year, requires the following:

  • 24 hours minimum volunteer service per year
  • 12 hours minimum continuing education per year
  • Turn in CMG Activity reports


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Page Updated August 2016
Mary Small, CSU Extension