Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station (NJAES) Cooperative Extension helps the diverse population of New Jersey adapt to a rapidly changing society and improve their lives and communities through an educational process that uses science based knowledge. Through science-based educational programs, Rutgers Cooperative Extension truly enhances the quality of life for residents of New Jersey and brings the wealth of knowledge of the state university to local communities.
Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station (NJAES) Cooperative Extension of Essex County:
- Provides educational programs to homemakers, home owners, agribusiness people, and youth.
- Is professionally staffed by Rutgers University faculty and support personnel.
- Uses the research and expertise of Rutgers University and other land-grant colleges to solve local challenges.
- Is guided by local advisory groups in identifying and meeting the needs of Essex County residents.
- Is supported by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, and the Essex County Executive and Board of Freeholders.
- Is available to any county resident without regard to race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, sexual orientation, marital status, or family status.
- 4-H programs and projects depend on the skills and interests of volunteer leaders. If you are an adult, and would like to start a new club, contact the 4-H office at 973-353-1338, ext 109.
Rutgers Master Gardener Program
Master Gardener Volunteer Application (203k PDF)
The New Jersey Master Gardener Program, founded in 1972, now serves as volunteer arm of the University Extension programs in more than 40 states. Master Gardeners are required to pursue a year of intensive study of botany, entomology, plant diseases, landscaping and environmentally sound methods of horticulture.
Following state certification, master gardeners perform community service. Programs include a helpline for gardeners, lectures for community groups, and advice and assistance to schools, to bring an understanding of the interrelationships of nature to our lives.
Master Gardeners use their skills in a variety of areas, including: Gardening demonstrations, Telephone Helpline and Plant Clinics, Horticultural therapy, Information booths at county fairs and other public events, Research assistance at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Harvesting and packing food for the hungry
Master Gardeners receive in-depth, hands-on training in horticulture from Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey faculty and professional staff.
Some basic topics include plant biology, propagation, soil science, and disease and pest control. There is a fee to cover material and program costs. (Scholarships are available.)
In exchange for the training, Master Gardeners agree to volunteer a certain number of hours, working in their community in programs sponsored by the Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station (NJAES). Successful graduates of the training become Certified Master Gardeners after they complete their volunteer service.
For More Information:
Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station
Cooperative Extension of Essex County
Master Gardener Program
621a Eagle Rock Avenue
Roseland, NJ 07068
Essex County Master Gardener Helpline: 973-228-2210
4-H Youth Development Program
4-H is the youth development component of Rutgers Cooperative Extension. 4-H uses a learn-by-doing approach to enable youth to become competent, caring citizens of the world. Dedicated adult volunteers provide leadership to 4-H clubs and activities.
Essex County 4-H staff and volunteers work together to develop programs which will provide youngsters with opportunities for new experiences and a broader view of life. Under the guidance of caring adult and teen leaders, youth in grades K-13 develop characteristics of leadership and citizenship, improve their skills, become more aware of others and the environment in which they live, and help others through community service. 4-H works with all youth on a grade-appropriate basis, without regard to race, color, national origin, sex, age, or disability.
Marissa Blodnick 973.353.1338, Ext. 104