Horticulture & Gardens

La Plata County Fruit Tree Gleaning - site has moved! Click Here!

2019 Colorado Master Gardener Schedule
2019 Colorado Master Gardener & Certificate Application - *Due Dec. 31

Are you interested in gaining knowledge about plants and helping others?  The Colorado Master Gardener program is for you!

The Colorado Master Gardener program in La Plata County is taking applications for our 12 week series that starts in January and will be held at the La Plata County Fairgrounds, every Thursday 9 am to 4 pm.

Master Gardeners are part of the outreach program of Colorado State University; a statewide network of faculty and staff that provides lifelong educational programs for all Coloradans in their local communities using research based information.

Participants receive intensive training in horticulture through 12 weeks of classes taught by Colorado State University professors, specialists and agents.  Beginning with basic botany, the program focuses on plant health issues such as soil composition, plant selection and care, disease diagnosis and insect identification and control.  Topics also include water-wise gardening, home vegetable and fruit production, turf management, irrigation, flower, tree care and plant care during drought.

In the first year, Colorado Master Gardener apprentices return 50 hours of volunteer time to the program during the next growing season.  Volunteers help the community by staffing clinic sites at community events, as well as planting and maintaining community demonstration gardens.

After the first year, Colorado Master Gardeners  are required to attend 12 hours of continuing education and give 24 hours of volunteer service a year.

The Colorado Master Gardener program can also be a stepping stone toward a career in horticulture.  Recognized by the green industry as a great vocational education course, the Colorado Master Gardener program is open to persons within and outside of the professional growing area.  Many people considering a career in the green industry start with master gardener training as an all-around introduction to advanced plant care.

The cost is $170 for the classes. You are responsible for purchasing The Science of Gardening textbook.

We also offer reduced fee scholarships based on household income.   The training is equivalent to a four credit hour course.  In comparison, tuition for and instate resident, undergraduate, four-credit class is $1276, plus books and fees.  We look forward to hearing from all who are interested and encourage you to join this fun group of hard working volunteers.  The deadline for submitting your application is the end of December, 2018

For Individuals that are interested in the Colorado Master Gardener training course without the volunteer commitment (i.e. without becoming a Colorado Master Gardener), the class work is available for a higher fee in-lieu-if the return of service. The fee is $530 plus the purchase of the textbook.

If gaining knowledge about plants and helping others through horticulture is of interest to you, the Colorado Master Gardener program is an ideal volunteer choice. 

Durango Botanical Society

“The Durango Botanical Society is committed to the design and development of  public gardens throughout SW Colorado for the purposes of education and demonstration."

For more information, please feel free to contact the Durango Botanical Society Director of Horticulture, Lisa Bourey, by email.

CSU Extension is excited to be part of the Durango Botanical Society and we are thrilled with all the work being done at the Durango Public Library  Demonstration Garden (between the library and the river trail). Come check the garden and become a member of the Society today!

Autumn Reading for Gardeners:

Saving Seed
Storing Vegetable and Flower Seeds
Fall Planted Bulbs & Corms
Watering in Fall & Winter

  • Pest and Plant Disease Identification - If you need something identified, we first recommend sending in photos with a brief description of the plant or issue. You can also bring in samples to the office. Make sure that insect and disease samples are in a sealed container. We do NOT identify poisonous plants, mushrooms, or animals (please leave the snakes at home).
  • Weed Management (for additional information visit the La Plata County Weed web page)
  • Landscape and Turf Management - links:

      Desirable, Durable Plants
      Turf and Lawn Management
      CSU Extension Yard and Garden

  • Small Acreage - Land Use and Production Practices - Please check the calendar for upcoming Small Acreage Workshops in La Plata, Archuleta, and Montezuma Counties. 
    CSU Extension Small Acreage Management

At a Glance

Darrin Parmenter
Darrin Parmenter– Horticulture/Small Farms

Contact Information

2500 Main Street
Durango, CO 81301 (map)

P: (970) 382-6464
F: (970) 247-2365

Email contact form