Get Involved


Join a dedicated team of more than 5,000 volunteers who work in their communities to promote research-based horticulture.  The Master Gardener Program provides gardeners with intensive education in the field of horticulture. Trainees who complete the program are certified as Extension Master Gardeners by the Accomack County Extension Service and become members of the Eastern Shore of Virginia Master Gardener (ESVMG) unit. 

To become an EMG, trainees must complete 50 hours of education, beginning in January each year, which include classroom instruction, field trips, and hands-on learning.  To remain active, EMGs must complete 20 hours of volunteer service and 8 hours of continuing education annually.

2024 Master Gardener (ESVMG) Basic Training Course INFO

Basic information about the ESVMG program and the Basic Training Class:

The 2024 Eastern Shore of Virginia Master Gardeners Basic Training will be held on Wednesdays starting January 10 and ending April 24, 2024, from 8:45 am to 3:00 pm at the Virginia Tech Agricultural and Research Center, 33446 Research Drive, Painter, Virginia 23420. Attending this program costs $125 plus an additional fee if you want a printed copy of the Master Gardener textbook.  Annual association dues as of 2024 are $22.00.

The Master Gardener program is sponsored statewide by Virginia Cooperative Extension and locally by the Accomack County Extension Office. Eastern Shore of Virginia Master Gardeners are volunteer educators who provide research-based information from Virginia Tech and Virginia State Universities for Accomack and Northampton Counties.  All members of the 2024 Master Gardener Trainee Class will receive intensive classroom training, and field trips, and must pass an open book final examination before being certified as “Master Gardener Interns”. 

Upon completion of the classroom training, all interns must volunteer at least 50 hours during the first year on any Master Gardener projects located on the Eastern Shore to become a Virginia Cooperative Extension (EMG) Master Gardener.

The Master Gardener program provides invaluable training and educational opportunities for interns.  The volunteer aspect of the program allows the members to dedicate their time and talents to educate the community and enhance and improve the Eastern Shore of Virginia by utilizing the science and art of horticulture.

The annual requirement to maintain active Master Gardener status is 20 hours of volunteer time, 8 hours of continuing education, and payment of the ESVMG annual dues. 

Eastern Shore Master Gardeners

Levels to Achieve and Maintain Master Gardener Status


Accepted trainees will begin classroom training on Wednesdays in Painter, VA. starting January 10 and ending April 24, 2024, from 8:45 am to 3:00 pm. The cost of the program is $125. Trainees must pass an open book final examination before being certified as “Master Gardener Interns”. 


Interns complete 50 hours of volunteer service on approved Eastern Shore Master Gardener projects within one year.

Master Gardener

Master Gardeners maintain their status by completing 20 hours of volunteer service, 8 hours of continuing education, and paying yearly dues.

If you are a person with a disability and desire any assistive devices, services or other accommodations to participate in this activity, please contact Theresa Long at 757-787-1361 ext. 14 during business hours of 8:30 a.m. and 5 p.m. to discuss accommodations 5 days prior to the event.  *TDD number is (800) 828-1120.  
Virginia Cooperative Extension programs and employment are open to all, regardless of age, color, disability, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, veteran status, or any other basis protected by law. An equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Virginia State University, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture cooperating. Edwin J. Jones, Director, Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg; M. Ray McKinnie, Administrator, 1890 Extension Program, Virginia State University, Petersburg.