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Training available for nursery professionals
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Landscape and nursery professionals will have the opportunity to become certified in their field during a Nov. 12-14 training course at Mississippi State University’s Central Mississippi Research and Extension Center in Raymond.
The Mississippi Certified Nursery Professional Certificate is awarded to individuals who have successfully completed all requirements of the Nursery Professional Certification Program and whose employers are members of the Mississippi Nursery and Landscape Association.
The course of study includes reviewing the Mississippi Certified Nursery Professional Study Manual and passing a test given at times and places designated by the MNLA. The course is taught by MSU professionals.
This is an in-house effort by the association to train employees of member firms. The cost for one manual and test is $100 per person. The cost for a re-test is $25.
The test will include 100 questions from the manual and field identification of 100 landscape plants commonly used in Mississippi.
Norman Winter, horticulturist with MSU’s Extension Service, said the manual and nursery certification program grew out of a nationwide need for a teaching aid to upgrade the retail nursery industry.
“The Mississippi Nursery and Landscape Association realized the importance of this effort as a result of observing the initial program of the Georgia Association of Nurserymen,” Winter said.
Todd Morgan of Toomsuba, president of the Mississippi Nursery and Landscape Association, said industry professionals realize their business is not just working with plants.
“This is a service-oriented industry. The ultimate goal is satisfied customers who keep returning to nursery and landscape businesses,” Morgan said. “The plants serve to beautify the grounds, shelter the gardens and lift the spirits of each customer.”
Morgan, owner of Morgan Plant Farm in Lauderdale County, said nursery professionals work to ensure a good gardening experience for their customers.
“They give their customers proper instructions and information in order for them to have the success they desire,” he said.
Immediate registration is encouraged. A minimum of 12 participants is required to put on this class. Applications are available at http://www.msnla.org or by contacting the MNLA office at (601) 919-8111.