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Fruit Production (Warm Climate)

Course CodeBHT217
Fee CodeS2
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment


Warmer climates offer opportunities to grow a range of fruits which either don't grow or don't grow very well in cooler regions. Along with differences associated with climate such as humidity and rainfall, warmer regions may pose different types of crop problems associated with pests and diseases.     

Whilst this course is primarily aimed at those growing fruits outdoors, it may also be of benefit to people looking to grow some warm climate fruits using protective structures such as greenhouses to create an artificially warm environment.

This is a self-paced distance education course. 

  • Learn how to grow different types of warm climate fruit.
  • Start an orchard, improve a farm, enhance your career opportunities

Lesson Structure

There are 8 lessons in this course:

  1. Introduction To Warm Climate Fruit Growing
    • Identify different types of fruit crops, which can be successfully grown in your region.
    • Explain the nature of the fruit industry in your region (locality).
  2. Establishing An Orchard
    • Develop a plan for the establishment of an orchard
  3. General Cultural Practices
    • Determine the cultural requirements for different fruit crops in your locality.
  4. Tree Fruits
  5. Nuts, Vines and Berries
  6. Citrus
  7. Cultural Management Of A Fruit Plantation or Orchard
  8. Marketing Your Produce

Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.


  • Identify different types of fruit crops, which can be successfully grown in a specific region.
  • Explain the nature of the fruit industry in a specific region.
  • Determine the cultural requirements for different fruit crops.
  • Develop a plan for the establishment of an orchard.
  • Formulate appropriate methods for marketing specific fruit crops grown in your locality.
  • Develop a calendar for cultural management of a fruit plantation, or orchard.

What You Will Do

  • Compile a resource file of different sources of information regarding commercial fruit varieties.
  • Compare the facilities used to produce six different fruit crops, in a specified locality.
  • Determine criteria for selecting a fruit variety to grow as a commercial crop in your locality.
  • Select five different fruit varieties with commercial potential for a specified location.
  • Analyse the physical layout of a specified orchard.
  • Determine the scope of commercial fruit growing in a specified locality.
  • Demonstrate standard soil tests to three different soils to determine:
    • Soil type
    • pH
    • Drainage
    • Water holding capacity
  • Evaluate the different soils tested to determine their suitability for growing different fruit varieties.
    • Analyse the culture
    • Watering
    • Weed control
    • Soil management
    • Pruning
    • Fertilising
    • Pest control
    • Disease control
    • Determine soil management practices, including:
    • Nutrition
    • Soil structure
    • Cultivation
    • Weed control
  • Determine the susceptibility of specified fruit species to pest and disease problems.
  • Explain how to control different specified pests and diseases, on different fruit varieties grown.
  • Develop sets of guidelines for pruning different types of fruits.
  • Determine the factors which are critical to growing fruit trees in the your locality.
  • Determine criteria to select a site for fruit growing in your locality.
  • Compare the physical layout of two different orchards you visit.
  • Prepare a plan for establishing a fruit growing area, in your locality, including:
    • Concept layout plan drawn to scale
    • Materials list (including plants)
    • Cost estimates for establishment.
  • Analyse different marketing systems in the fruit industry, including at local, national and international levels.
  • Explain common reasons for price fluctuations in the fruit industry.
  • Compare different fruit crops in relation to different factors, including:
    • Storage requirements
    • Storage life
    • Harvesting time
    • Shelf life
    • Transport to market
  • Evaluate the presentation and packaging of different fruits, for marketing through different marketing systems.
  • Analyse different marketing strategies used by a specific fruit grower.
    • Develop a marketing strategy, including:
    • Marketing stages
    • Marketing schedule (ie. timetable)
    • Estimated marketing costs
    • Handling procedures
    • Promotions, for a specific fruit crop.
  • Differentiate between the cultural practices undertaken by different growers, on the same crop, grown in two different localities.
  • Determine the cultural practices necessary to grow different fruit crops for a twelve month period, on a specified site.
  • Prepare a monthly calender, covering a twelve month period, for cultural practices in a fruit plantation or orchard you choose.


There's more to growing fruit than just planting a tree and forgetting it. Sure, sometimes you are lucky enough for that to happen, but for any serious fruit grower who wants to minimise risk, and do as well as possible at harvest; it is important to make the best decisions.

Every plant variety has a preferred set of growing conditions. In order to maximise our opportunities in establishing a fruit crop (or any crop) we can consider:

  • If we have an existing site we can select plant varieties to grow there that suit the growing conditions available on that site.
  • If we have selected a crop or crops that we wish to grow then we can then select a site that provides the growing conditions suited to that crop or crops.
  • We can modify a site to produce the growing conditions we require. This can be very expensive in some cases, and not worth the time, effort and resources required, but in many cases is a viable option. Modifications could include mounding soil to provide better drainage, planting windbreaks, building dams or sinking bores to provide extra water for dry times, providing predator (e.g. rabbit)  proof fencing, and digging drainage channels.
  • We can also in many cases modify the crop to suit different growing conditions. This might involve a plant breeding program, or genetic engineering (e.g. producing tomatoes containing genes for cold resistance hence extending the range of areas where tomatoes can be grown, and extending the length of the growing season into cooler periods.
  • If we have the financial resources, manpower and equipment required not only to grow, but also to harvest , store and perhaps market what is grown.


How Can This Course Help Me?

This course is designed to be of benefit to people who are interested in learning how to grow a range of different fruits suited to warmer climates including tropical and subtropical regions. It will also be of value to those who are operating or working in an existing warm climate fruit growing business.

Take this course if you would like to:

  • Develop a commercial fruit growing business in a warm climate.
  • Find ways to improve an existing warm climate fruit growing business - large or small.
  • Enhance your employability in a fruit growing businesses.
  • Improve your knowledge of horticultural and agricultural fruit growing techniques.
  • Grow fruits on a small scale e.g. for home use, in an orchard or on a small property.

This course may be studied by itself or along with other 100-hour modules as part of a self-designed proficiency award, certificate or higher level qualification.

Meet some of our academics

Maggi BrownMaggi is regarded as an expert in organic growing throughout the UK, having worked for two decades as Education Officer at the world renowned Henry Doubleday Research Association. She has been active in education, environmental management and horticulture across the UK for more than three decades. Some of Maggi's qualifications include RHS Cert. Hort. Cert. Ed. Member RHS Life Member Garden Organic (HDRA) .
Diana Cole B.A. (Hons), Dip. Horticulture, BTEC Dip. Garden Design, Diploma Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development, PTLLS (Preparing to Teach in the Life Long Learning Sector), P.D.C. In addition to the qualifications listed above, Diana holds City & Guild construction qualifications and an NPTC pesticide spraying licence (PA1/PA6). Diana runs her own landscape gardening business (Arbella Gardens). Active in many organisations including the British Trust for Conservation Volunteers.
Yvonne SharpeRHS Cert.Hort, Dip.Hort, M.Hort, Cert.Ed., Dip.Mgt. Over 30 years experience in business, education, management and horticulture. Former department head at a UK government vocational college. Yvonne has traveled widely within and beyond Europe, and has worked in many areas of horticulture from garden centres to horticultural therapy. She has served on industry committees and been actively involved with amateur garden clubs for decades.

Check out our eBooks

Organic GardeningCreate a healthy, well-balanced garden. Attract abundant beneficial insects to pollinate your plants. Have healthy, fertile, organic soils teeming with life. Use this book as a guide to establish lush gardens laden with fruit, vegetables, herbs and ornamentals - without the use of chemicals. The ebook covers: soils and nutrition, pest and disease, natural weed control, conservation and recycling. 179 pages, 170 colour photos
HerbsHerbs are fascinating plants, mystical and romantic. They have a rich history dating back centuries. Used by monks, apothecaries and ‘witches’ in the past, herbs are undergoing a revival in interest. They are easy to grow, scented, culinary and medicinal plants. In a formal herb garden or peppered throughout the garden, herbs rarely fail! Find out how they are used as medicines, for cooking, perfumes and more. This book has nine chapters covering the following topics: an introduction to herbs, cultivation, propagation, pest and diseases, herb gardens, an A-Z plant directory, using herbs, features for herb gardens, herbs in pots - 113 colour photos 61 pages
Fruit, Vegetables and HerbsHome grown produce somehow has a special quality. Some say it tastes better, others believe it is just healthier. And there is no doubt it is cheaper! Watching plants grow from seed to harvest and knowing that the armful of vegies and herbs you have just gathered for the evening meal will be on the table within an hour or two of harvest, can be an exciting and satisfying experience.