Master Gardener Program in Florence County 2016

The Master Gardener Program in Florence County started in 1996, and includes participants from adjacent counties in Michigan. Over 100 people have been trained since that time, and there are currently 20 certified Master Gardener Volunteers (MGVs) for 2017. The UW-Extension staff member facilitating the MG Program is Kathy Bednarski.


Volunteer Service in 2016

Youth Education 57 hours
Adult Education 166 hours
Support 2726 hours
Total 2949 hours

Since 2000:  34,722 hours at a value of over $669,407

* using the current estimated dollar value of volunteer time in Wisconsin of $22.48 per hour, from Independent Sector. Cumulative value based on previous annual estimates.

mg-footer-logoWhere you can find activities by MGVs

  • Florence Gazebo Garden
  • Two Native Gardens at the Florence Resource Center
  • Fisher Lake Garden
  • County Fair Booth
  • Spring Plant Sale
  • Fall Plant Sale
  • November Wreath Workshop

Education For Northern Gardeners

The annual North Stars Garden Conference, a day- long spring conference, attracts people from well beyond the area and has provided a place to come together to learn and meet like-minded people in a fun and educational seƫng that was not available in the past. In addition to planning and executing the event, some MGVs also teach classes.

Plant Sale Supports Students

Proceeds from annual spring and fall plant sales have allowed the MGVs to award $15,300 since 2004 to students who are pursuing a two- or four-year degree in a field related to horticulture. Customers line up early to get locally grown plants that can survive the rigors of northwoods gardening. MGVs provide advice on what and where to plant and to answer gardening questions, ranging from pest control to when to divide specific perennials.

Gardens Showcase Great Plants

The demonstration perennial garden, located in front of the Florence Community Center, not only beautifies the town’s west entrance, but provides a place where tourists and residents can learn about plants or just sit and relax on handsome benches. Planting of this young garden began in 2014, and now in its third year plants are beginning to fill out, new plants have been added, and signage projects are underway. The plantings in the Gazebo Garden on the main street of Florence also attract a lot of attention. We are partnering with the students at the Florence High School Fab Lab to create signage for the garden to help answer questions people have about the plants there.

image of master gardener volunterers