Consumer Horticulture

The MSU Extension Consumer Horticulture team provides Michigan residents with researched-based information to properly manage their home environment (lawns, gardens, landscapes and ornamentals). The Livingston County MSU Extension office assists county residents with utilizing Extension resources for plant disease diagnosis, insect & weed identification, fertilizer recommendations, pest problems, landscape questions, seeding & lawn maintenance, and more! Read on to learn about available resources.


Toll-free Lawn & Garden Hotline (888-MSUE4MI)

Your first stop for home gardening and lawn advice!

Contact MSU Extension’s state-wide hotline by dialing 1-888-678-3464 (1-888-MSUE-4MI).

  • Hotline available Mon, Weds, Fri, 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. (Press option 1)


Ask Extension

Ask Extension offers one-to-one answers from MSU Extension experts and Extension Master Gardener volunteers on topics such as lawns, gardening, agriculture, nutrition and physical activity, food safety, food preservation, natural resources, community development, youth programming and more! 

Ask Extension:


Take a Soil Sample and Have the Results Interpreted

The first step to growing and maintaining a healthy lawn and garden is getting to know your soil!

Clients have the opportunity to purchase soil sample bags through Michigan State University Extension and receive recommendations directly from MSU. A&L Labs analyze soil samples and send results to MSU Extension where a recommendation will be generated and sent to the client by MSU Extension staff. All MSU recommendations utilize the latest research and follow state laws and guidelines.

Home and Garden soil self-mailers including sample bags are available for purchase through the MSU Bookstore (link coming soon) or local MSU Extension offices. The self-mailers cost $26 and look similar to previous self-mailers.

Commercial soil sample bags can only be purchased in person at MSU Extension offices. The cost for the commercial samples is $18 and does not include shipping costs to A&L Labs. Click here for any FAQ you might have.


"Gardening in Michigan" website

This website ( is full of resources to get you growing this season. Topics covered include lawns, plant selection, soils, vegetables, and pollinators.


Smart Gardening Initiative

Become a Smart Gardener by investigating Smart Lawns, Smart Plants, and Smart Soils. Also practice Smart vegetable gardening and Smart gardening to protect pollinators! Stop by our office for hardcopies of numerous tip sheets to help you save time and money while protecting the environment this season.


Become a MSU Extension certified Master Gardener

Help people and communities grow! Lend a hand to the MSU Extension Consumer Horticulture team’s effort to get the word out about research-based, environmentally sound gardening practices. Interested individuals get the chance to take a 13-week training course and engage in a community-outreach, horticulture-related volunteer project. To find out about training, visit the state-wide Master Gardener Program website for more information.