How to Get Involved


Membership in the National Junior Horticultural Association is achieved by attending a convention or participation in any NJHA project or activity. There is no enrollment or membership fee. If one should need questions answered, please contact the Executive Secretary.

Carole S. Carney
15 Railroad Avenue
Homer City, PA 15748


The focus of NJHA is summed up with the acronym HYCEL

H stands for Horticulture. Horticulture is an art, science, business, or hobby used in everyday life.  It is the love and passion for plants.  It conjoins backyards to neighborhoods, and neighborhoods to community, introducing new cultures and a new way of life.

Y stands for Youth.  The youth of today search for knowledge and have a desire to learn new skills.  As youth attain more knowledge and greater skill, they develop a respect for the dignity of work and become more productive and responsible citizens.

C stands for Careers.  A career represents an individual’s life and work in society.  NJHA acquaints youth with horticulture careers to inform them of opportunities to continue their passion into adulthood.  Careers represent the future of horticulture in NJHA.

E stands for Education. NJHA promotes and sponsors an educational program for youth through projects and activities which relate to the understanding of horticulture.

L stands for Leadership.  A leader is someone who moves out in front, who forges ahead with ideas, ambition, and determination to get things done.  A leader motivates others and makes them want to join him or her in an endeavor.  This is the goal of each NJHA member.

Let NJHA introduce you to all the possibilities of the world of gardening. Whether you like to grow plants, give a presentation, take photos, experiment with gardening, or learn how to identify plants, NJHA has an activity for you. While most of the projects and activities are completed by yourself, many of the programs can be multi-person projects such as 4-H, FFA, scouts, vocational horticulture and agriculture groups, and other gardening groups.

Independent youth participate directly in NJHA. With the exception of the Young America Project, Reports and the Horticulture Contest, NJHA does not provide horticultural subject matter information. The speeches, demonstrations, project reports, etc. provide opportunities for youth to gain experience and recognition at the national level. All subject matter presented should be in accordance with accepted practices and knowledge of horticulture science.

The Cooperative Extension Service in your state is a good source for scientifically accurate information. Instructors and leaders in programs for physically or mentally challenged youth may use and adapt NJHA project materials. Special recognition may be provided for reports that are clearly identified with respect to these individuals and/or groups. Recognition is based on individual or group progress. NJHA is organized through a network of state leaders. These individuals determine eligibility rules for participants to compete at the annual NJHA convention.

Youth in States that have a state leader vacancy may participate by contacting the NJHA National Program Chairman or the Executive Secretary.


Age eligibility for participation in NJHA projects and activities is for youth 22 years of age and under. Not all projects are open to all age levels. Specific ages are specified in the requirements for each activity. Grouping by ages allows youth to compete against other youth with similar abilities. Group projects are to be entered in the age division in accordance with the age of the oldest individual in the group. (Note: eligibility is based on an individualís age as of December 31 of the year of project participation.)

NJHA is organized in the United States around a network of state leaders. Project participation from outside the USA is encouraged. If any of these activities are of interest, you should get in touch with the National Program Chairperson or Vice Program Chairperson or the Executive Secretary. Project reports should be submitted in English.