Master Gardener Program in Florence County 2017

The Master Gardener Program in Florence County started in 1996, and includes participants from adjacent counties in Michigan. Over 105 people have been trained since that time, and there are currently 11 certified Master Gardener Volunteers (MGVs) for 2018. The UW-Extension staff member facilitating the MG Program is Sabrina Leffler.


Volunteer Service in 2017

Youth Education 51 hours
Adult Education 126 hours
Support 2,194 hours
Total 2,370 hours

Since 2000: 37,092 hours at a value of over $724,048


* using the current estimated dollar value of volunteer time in Wisconsin of $23.06 per hour, from Independent Sector. Cumulative value based on previous annual estimates.

mg-footer-logoWhere you can find activities by MGVs

  • Florence Community Center Gardens
  • Natural Resource Center Native Gardens
  • Town of Florence Fisher Lake Sign garden
  • Spring Annual Plant Sale, Fairgrounds
  • Fall Annual Plant Sale, Florence Community Center
  • Wreath Workshop, Florence Community Center

Native Garden Showcases Area Plants

MGVs maintain a native garden in front of the Natural Resource Center in Florence where UW-Extension is located. Every fall we clean up the garden and one of the chores we actually look forward to is the “Annual Cutting of the Cup Plant”. This native grows to 10 feet tall most years and has spread from a single stem to a compact clump about 3 feet across. Last year we sold divisions of this plant at both our spring and fall plant sales.

Florence National Resource Center

Education for Northern Gardeners

We organized a day-long garden tour at the request of a garden club from Oconto County who wanted to see some “up north” gardens. The group of 50+ toured a home built at the base of a terraced and landscaped granite bluff, a woodland property with shade, sun gardens and a fruit tree meadow, a shade garden incorporated into a glacial kettle, as well as a local garden center, lunch at a lakeside restaurant and a visit to our ongoing downtown gardens.

Supporting Students

MGVs donated $500 each to 3 area school projects: Niagara school to assist in purchasing an additional planting tower for students to grow greens they then eat; Florence Middle School to assist the Environmental Science class to attend Trees for Tomorrow; Florence Elementary School to assist with costs of the foundation for a large donated greenhouse which will be open for our use as well. Our continuing Inga Fleming Memorial Scholarship fund has now given a total of $18,500 to county residents continuing their education in related areas.