Master Gardeners provide free service to County residents. Residents of Middlesex County who have questions on home horticulture, local agriculture, pest problems or backyard conservation should call the Master Gardener Helpline at 732-398-5220 for consultation. If you must call at off hours, please leave a phone number and detailed message about your problem. Our Master Gardener Helpline volunteers will research the answer before they call you back during regularly scheduled hours.
9:00 AM - 12 Noon Weekdays, April through September
The helpline is just one of the community services that our Master Gardener volunteers offer County residents. Other services include Speakers’ Bureau, Community and School Garden guidance, and workshops on various gardening and environmental topics.
Master Gardeners are community volunteers trained by Rutgers experts in sustainable gardening and environmental principles.
- Sound gardening techniques - plant selection;
disease, insect and weed control
- Integrated Pest Management
- Creative methods to conserve natural resources
- Community interaction
Master Gardener interns are required to volunteer 60 hours of service to Rutgers
Cooperative Extension of Middlesex County before achieving certification. Once graduated a certified Master Gardener must volunteer 25 hours of service each year, to remain in good standing.
Examples of volunteer service
- Answering gardening questions on the Gardeners
- Conducting composting and recycling
- Community beautification and
demonstration garden maintenance
- Lecturing on a variety of gardening topics
- Assisting with community events such as the
Middlesex County Fair
Participants become certified Master Gardeners after they have satisfactorily
completed the training program and have fulfilled their volunteer service
Is the Master Gardeners /
Environmental Stewardship program for you?
Join if you are:
- Interested in learning more about plants and
- Eager to gain knowledge on using
natural resources wisely.
- Willing to share your knowledge by
assisting in gardening projects or programs.
- Looking for fulfillment resulting from community
The Master Gardener
student agrees to:
- Enroll in the program (includes a non-refundable fee for program cost
and educational and lab materials).
- Abide by all policies of Rutgers Cooperative
Extension of Middlesex County
- Satisfactorily complete the training program
(classes, labs and field trips) within the time period of the program.
- Attend 80 percent of all classes and field trips.
- Actively participate in program committees (2 or
- Participate in a mandatory "hands-on" garden class time during the first growing season of their Master
- Complete 60 hours of community volunteer service
through Rutgers Cooperative Extension programs in Middlesex County during their first year as an intern (EARTH Center and Rutgers events count towards this 60 hours ).
- Support and promote the Master
Gardener/Environmental and Community Stewardship Program,primarily at the
- Assist Rutgers Cooperative Extension with Middlesex
County Fair agricultural booth and other designated events.
Interns have a choice to attend the required lectures on either Thursday evenings or Friday mornings.
In addition to attending weekly lectures, September through April, and “hands-on” gardening sessions
One of the areas of focus and volunteerism for our certified Master Gardeners program is Horticulutral Therapy. Horticultural Therapy uses plants and gardens to promote an individual's mental, physical and intellectual well-being. This practice may use seasonal flowers and leaves in crafts that stimulate the
bodies and minds of residents at local group homes. These programs promote self-esteem and social interaction, plus the residents have FUN!!!
They currently serve residents at :
Cedar Oaks Care Center , South Plainfield
The Middlesex County VA Home, Menlo Park
Middlesex County Master Gardeners Helpful Links:
Nearby Land Grant Universities: