- Designed For
- Professionals and hobbyist gardeners interested in learning sustainable practices at their own pace.
- Always available
- Online | Self-paced
- $45 each
- Introduction to the Oregon Master Gardener Program short course is free.
- Sustainable Landscape Design short course is free for a limited time
- Sustainable Landscape Management short course is free for a limited time
- Each course takes 4-6 hours to complete
Ask us about Workforce Development Training. We can customize this program to fit your organization’s specific needs.
Excerpted from OSU's Master Gardener Online course, the Master Gardener Short Course Series allows students to study specific fundamentals of gardening. The various subject areas of the OSU Master Gardener curriculum encourage participants to learn the art and science of growing and caring for their own plants.
- Intro to Oregon Master Gardener Program
- Basic Botany
- Soils and Compost
- Vegetable Gardening
- Introduction to Entomology
- Plant Pathology
- Pesticide Safety
- Herbaceous Ornamental Plants
- FREE Sustainable Landscape Design
- FREE Sustainable Landscape Management
- Integrated Pest Management
- Woody Landscape Plants
Please note: Taking all self-paced courses will not allow you to receive a Certificate of Home Horticulture or become an OSU Master Gardener. These courses are entirely self-paced and are not taught by an instructor. Also note that you will have access to course materials for one year after your registration date.
Those who need or desire Master Gardener or Home Horticulture certification should click here for details.
Past Master Gardener Short Course Participants
I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the content. The program is awesome. I wanted to just to supplement my hobby and learn some new things. I enjoyed the flexibility. I could login and logout as I pleased. With a cup of hot coffee right next to me! Loved it ! A+.
~ Drew Leclerc
I enjoyed the ease of still being able to spend time with my kids and not miss out on sports. Gardening is a lost art and we need more people from my generation and younger to engage.
~ Anastasia Timmerman
I'm interested in changing careers from real estate to horticulture and this program helped me become more confident that this is a career switch I could make as I was able to pick up on the information quickly. I enjoyed the videos that accompanied the information, so it was great to have that visual learning tool. It's a well thought out program with ample information and an overall great program.
I was motivated by the convenience of online access and different options of the courses. It helped me improve my skills in the areas I wanted and actually helped me start a small plant nursery business. This program was well structured and informative. It was an overall great program.
~ Adam Armstrong
I was looking for an online Master Gardener course since my home state (NJ) does not offer any within an hour’s drive for me. I wondered whether or not information would be relevant for me in a different hort zone/state/coast. Through the series I learned a lot to enhance my gardening and to help teach my young students. I enjoyed the overall coursework, which allowed me to be more knowledgeable about growing at home and in my school garden. I also enjoyed the online flexibility! It’s extremely informative and easy to understand for someone who is a neo-Gardener. Please keep offering classes. It’s an amazing, trusted resource.
~ Sonya Harris
I was motivated to earn my Master Gardener recertification. I gained increased knowledge of our insect world. I liked the moderator, I thought the instructors were knowledgeable, and the system was easy to use.
~ Barbara Jackson
I most liked the practical aspect of the course. Because gardening is an art form as well as a science it is really hard to put these aspects into a course. I will say the program helped me understand the plants which make my council area beautiful. BTW I think its county in the US and council in the UK and Australia (I live in Adelaide South Australia). Thank you for investing your time in the course:)
~ Ben Parkin
I learned new things that will help prepare me for a master gardener program. I’d recommend these courses - the online option and courses were easy to follow while learning the new material.
~ Cassie Brown
I learned a lot about how to know if things are doing well or not in my garden... and then how to help others too. You get out of it what you put in to it, so there's no pressure... It's a great learning opportunity and environment.
~ Courtney Davie
The courses are great. From this program, I've been able to help others have a better idea of how to manage their land and gardens. The land where I work is thriving with new life, and all the choices have made this the place where things happen, using all the resources that the land itself grant us. The professors are cool, accessible, and down to Earth people who are willing to help you achieve your goals and dreams. The courses offer all the tools to make everyone choose the right path in terms of sustainability and correct management of their land. Keep on going. Suggestion, add a tropical course. The climate and the terrain is crazy. People will have a better understanding of how permaculture works in tropical parts of the world.
~ Edgardo Granel
I wanted to expand my knowledge for my role as children's education coordinator at a local botanical garden. I enjoyed the online flexibility and self paced format and it helped expand my knowledge. Great information, easy access. Look forward to doing more online classes through your program.
~ Ellen Lane
The "Master" in the name was intimidating! The program opened up a whole new world of ideas and I love the way it encourages me to keep educating myself. I recommend it all the time, mostly because of the quality of the teachers.
~ Jessie Milligan
I have my own garden and am not always successful with it and I wanted some knowledge about gardening. I learned several things about gardening that have helped me to become a better gardener such as identifying certain problem pests and signs of sickly plants/vegetables etc. I also discovered our soil is very alkaline and our roses had black spot and powdery mildew. I enjoyed the online flexibility and I could go at my own pace and learn a new skill.
~ Joi Poulin
It has helped me in my own garden and I would like to enroll in the full program but I live in Washington state. It's definitely worthwhile for anyone looking to broaden their knowledge and appreciation.
~ Julie Stream
After learning about Soil Food Web, I realized I wanted more education and took the OSU MG - Basic Botany course. It was my first botany course beyond simplistic coursework of Jr. high and high school. It reinforced some foundation I had and gave me a much stronger understanding. I'm now working on projects including a growing simulation and a botany themed novel that have both benefited from the new info I've learned from this OSU course. (Learning what you don't yet know is a huge springboard to help you teach yourself new things.) I enjoyed the variety of methods including written downloads, videos, and graphics were a well rounded way of keeping the work engaging. It's a great way to connect to expertise from far away without having to travel to OSU for the coursework. I really appreciate the opportunity OSU MG gave me to learn valuable information.
~ Karl Aldinger
I had an interest in gardening and the desire to get some educational background and this seemed like the best online offering. Now I want to go further and learn more, and eventually have my own greenhouse :) I am now able to talk with some authority on plant classifications, soil, and plant pathologies. I helped my neighbour figure out why her garden was failing and gave her advice to improve its health - it worked and she was really happy! The flexible online learning option was what sold me - my high pressure job demands odd and sometimes long hours from me, so learning online made it possible for me to study with OSU. The knowledgeable instructors and great resources for students. I'm from Canada, and the fact that I was willing to take your program and pay US dollars instead of take a gardening program at my local college - says a lot about my perception of the quality of your education. I was not disappointed.
~ Laurie Smith
I wanted to learn more about gardening from a research-education based organization. I feel more informed about new topics and stronger in ones that were reinforced. I like the videos that reinforce the written portions. I also appreciate that there are occasionally free courses. It’s a wonderful resource based in research.
~ Valerie Moore
I am a Lane County Volunteer Master Gardener and I am always interested in expanding, improving, and refreshing my gardening and agricultural knowledge. The phytophthera course significantly elevated my knowledge of that subject and has been useful to me from time to time when I was serving in the plant clinic. I particularly enjoyed receiving lectures from highly qualified experts and, of course, gaining knowledge in the comfort of my own home. I also like having links that I can go back to. These programs have enriched my life. It is a great privilege to interact and learn from the fine people running and teaching these programs.
~ William Detlefsen
What You'll Learn
- The basics of botany and entomology
- Integrated pest management and pesticide safety
- Soils, fertilizers and composting
- Ornamental, herbaceous plants and woody plants
- Vegetable, indoor and container gardening
- Sustainable landscaping
- Plant pathology
In this series
Signe Danler is a veteran Master Gardener and landscape designer with a Masters of Ag degree in Horticulture. With the OSU Extension Service Master Gardener Program, she uses her experience and training in gardening, urban forestry and ecological landscaping to communicate about and promote sustainable gardening and landscaping practices.
Gail Langellotto works with the Oregon State University Master Gardener program, state and local agencies, nonprofits and other non-governmental organizations. She helps to develop a better research-based understanding of how to design and sustainably manage gardens and parks to maximize ecosystem services. Her OSU Extension Service and outreach efforts are focused on communicating research-backed management practices to home gardeners and commercial landscapers.
- Can these courses be taken in sequence in order for a participant to become an OSU Master Gardener?
No. In order to become an OSU Master Gardener Volunteer, a participant must enroll in Option 1 of the instructor-led Master Gardener Online Course and complete 40 to 70 volunteer hours with his or her local chapter after finishing the coursework.
- Will an instructor teach these courses?
No. The self-paced Master Gardener Online short course series was created for those who are interested in taking some of the same basic gardening courses offered in the full-length Master Gardener Online course but do not want to take the entire course. The short courses are self-paced. You must take the full-length Master Gardener Online course in order to learn the material under the guidance of an instructor.
- What is the time commitment required for each course?
You should budget up to six hours for each course: one to two hours to view lectures, one hour for readings, and one to three hours for assignments and quizzes. If you are completely unfamiliar with gardening or basic biology, we recommend budgeting a little extra time for each course.
- I understand each short course includes a quiz. Will I get to see my grade after taking the quiz?
Yes. You will see your grade immediately after completing the quiz.
- I understand that each short course includes assignments. Will my assignments be graded?
No. We only encourage you to complete the assignments for your personal benefit.
- Are there group rates for classes who wish to use one of the short courses?
Yes. If you are an instructor who'd like to use this content with your students, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for our special class rates.
- Can these courses be taken in sequence to earn a Certificate of Home Horticulture?
No. In order to earn a Certificate of Home Horticulture, you must complete Option 2 of the instructor-led Master Gardener Online Course.