About Simcoe County Master Gardeners

The Simcoe County Master Gardeners group was formed in 1986 with the support of the Alliston Horticulture Society. Founding members included Alastair Crawford and Ken Phipps as co-ordinators, Ivy Gross and husband Ray, Gisela Kruegar, Marjorie Bell, Jean Crawford, Jane Blackstock and Kevin Healey to name a few.

The Master Gardeners of Ontario is a volunteer organization comprised of individuals who are certified horticultural experts providing in-depth sustainable gardening information to the general public.

Our mandate is to educate and motivate the general public and gardeners in and around Simcoe County.

The Simcoe County Master Gardeners offer a wide variety of Speaker Talks and Demonstrations. Book us for your next event. Presentations are available on the following topics:


Those marked with an asterisk * are available via ZOOM for the 2021 gardening season.

*Grow Your Own Vegetables – A step-by-step guide for new gardeners. Learn the basics of planting and growing your own vegetables in raised gardens and containers

*Harvest Your Seeds! – Learn how to save money by harvesting and properly storing seeds from your own garden

*Daylillies – an exploration of these hardy, drought tolerant garden staples

Clematis, Queen of Vines – Everything you ever wanted to know about this beautiful vine

*Soil Management – a look at ways to amend your existing soil in order to get maximum growth from your plants

Designing with Hostas – Hostas Everywhere and how to plant them amongst your other plants

*50 Plants That Changed the World – a look at some interesting plants and the impact they have made

*Shade Gardening – Best practices and best plants for shade gardens, including some attractive seasonal and perennial combinations

Design Made Easy – a quick over view of garden design, Gardening 101

Clematis and Roses – how to mix roses and clematis together for a pleasing effect

Edible Flowers – which ones are safe to eat

Growing A Butterfly Garden – Butterfly identification and the plants that attract them

Raised Beds and Container Vegetable Gardens – which vegetables to plant for best results and a choice of containers

Tree Planting – the best trees to plant for your area

*Natural Pest Control in the Garden – Fact & Folklore: environmentally friendly pest and disease control techniques for your garden

*Plant This Not That – An overview of invasive plants and lovely, native, pollinator friendly alternatives

*Pruning – A fun and informative session to take the fear out of pruning: your plants will look fabulous with only minutes of timely attention

*Good Bugs – Bad Bugs – Prey and predators – how to encourage good bugs and deal with the undesirable ones.

*Composting – A B C’s of composting – how to turn kitchen scraps into garden gold

Ferns and Friends – A review of the six most popular fern families and the perennial combinations they play well with

*Houseplants – A houseplant for every corner of your home – how to keep them healthy and disease-free

Plants That are Almost Unkillable! – extremely hardy and low-maintenance plants to make your garden beautiful

Beautiful Bulbs – a “how-to” approach to choosing, planting, and maintaining these spring beauties

Growing Herbs in Pots – is space an issue for you? Enjoy fresh herbs all summer

*Tips for Putting Your Garden to Bed – A step-by-step approach to fall gardening

Ornamental Grasses – Add interest and low maintenance to your garden with a stunning, colourful selection of grasses

Container Gardening – No room, no problem. How to plant containers that are flexible, movable and will beautify any space

Hellebores – bashful spring beauties that add a subtle touch to your garden

Top Five Garden Mistakes – Common garden mishaps and how to avoid them

Where Did All the Flowers Go? – Deer-proofing your garden

In addition to Presentations, the Master Gardeners also offer PickSmart Presentations. A “Pick Smart” is short – 15 minutes. Typically there are 2 or 3 Master Gardener presenters covering different topics. Each Master Gardener does a short 10 – 15 minute presentation at a station 2 – 3 times during the event – attendees are divided into groups and rotate from station to station.

The room has to be large enough to provide enough room to spread out and provide satisfactory acoustics.


Healthy Soil for Your Garden
Composting Essentials
Get Ready to Plant! Let’s Explore Seeds
Tasty and Pretty Herbs
Are Roses a Thorn in Your Side?
Garden Tools and Tips
Orchids – Elegant, Exotic and Easy
Preparing your Garden for Next Season.               Growing and Pruning Fruit Trees
The Differences between Organic and Non-Organic

Book a Speaker

Please refer to our library of topics above.