It's Easy to Enrol

Select a Learning Method

 

£325.00 Payment plans available.

Enable Javascript to automatically update prices.

Courses can be started at any time from anywhere in the world!

Plant Identification and Knowledge (Horticulture II)

Course CodeBHT102
Fee CodeS2
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment

Become Skilled in Naming, Growing and Using Plants

This course is a natural progression from Horticulture 1, but can be taken as a subject in its own right. It concentrates on the identification, care and use of plants in a systematic way.

Plant knowledge learned here is in high demand in the horticulture industry. It is something prioritised by employers, but often not covered sufficiently well in modern horticulture courses.

  • There are hundreds of thousands of plants.
  • Each one has its own cultural preferences for optimal growth.
  • Learn to distinguish between plants and you will create better gardens, grow better crops, avoid lots of horticultural problems, and avoid wastage.
This course provides a foundation for all good horticulture. You will learn to identify many different plants and have the knowledge to investigate and discover the names of hundreds of others much faster and easier than you might have ever imagined.
Comment from a Student 

"This is the first correspondence course I have done and I have thoroughly enjoyed it and I just wanted to say a big THANK YOU. I appreciate everyone's effort in such a professionally-run organisation with seamless administration. The office staff's happy can-do attitude, their fast responses to all queries, tutor Shane Gould's quick turnaround in assignment marking and his supportive and motivational feedback and last but not least, the sound subject guides. Most importantly I hope my thanks and appreciation can be communicated to all the staff who have supported me long the way of my learning! I work full time and study on the weekend but really don't stop thinking about what gardening solution I need in order to answer my assignments every day of the week. Thank you for such a great learning experience and I cant wait to start the second half of my course!!"
- Skye

The ability to identify plants is perhaps the most important skill any gardener, horticulturist or landscaper can have.

This course gives you a foundation and framework upon which to build this skill.

This course is a natural progression from Horticulture 1, but can be taken as a subject in its own right.

Lesson Structure

There are 10 lessons in this course:

  1. The Groups of Plants ‑ setting a framework for the whole subject.
    • Identify plants from a wide range of taxonomic and cultural groups, using a range of different techniques.
  2. Use of Plants
    • Plant selection, soils.
  3. Australian Native Plants
    • Techniques for the growing of native shrubs and trees, including the selection, culture and use of different species.
  4. Exotic Ornamental Plants
    • Techniques for the growing of exotic ornamental shrubs and trees, including the selection, culture and use of different species.
  5. Indoor & Tropical Plants
    • Techniques for the growing of indoor plants, including selection, culture and use of different varieties
  6. Bedding Plants
    • Techniques for the growing of bedding plants, including selection, culture and use of different varieties.
  7. Vegetables
    • Techniques for the growing of edible crop plants, including selection, culture and use of vegetables, fruit, berries and nuts (Part A).
  8. Fruits, Nuts & Berries
  9. Herbs
  10. Alternative Growing Techniques
    • Hydroponics, container growing, terrariums, Appropriate applications for a range of alternative growing methods

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.

Aims

  • Identify plants from a wide range of taxonomic and cultural groups, using a range of different techniques.
  • Determine techniques for the growing of native shrubs and trees, including the selection, culture and use of different species.
  • Determine techniques for the growing of exotic ornamental shrubs and trees, including the selection, culture and use of different species.
  • Determine techniques for the growing of indoor plants, including selection, culture and use of different varieties.
  • Determine techniques for the growing of bedding plants, including selection, culture and use of different varieties.
  • Develop techniques for the growing of edible crop plants, including selection, culture and use of vegetables, fruit, berries and nuts.
  • Determine appropriate applications for a range of alternative growing methods.

How Accurate are Plant Names?

Plants have two types of names -common names, and scientific names.

Common Names

Any one type of plant can have many different common names -sometimes dozens. Different regions within the same country can be using different common names for the same plant; and sometimes, even different people in the same street might use different common names for the same plant. Because of this -Coimmon Names are very unreliable for identifying plants.

Scientific Names

Scientists largely control the scientific names; and in theory, any one type of plant has only one scientific name; but in practice, there are sometimes conflicting points of view between scientists; and at times, nurserymen and horticultural trades people, are slow to accept changes made to names by scientists.

Nevertheless -scientific names are on the whole, the only effective way of identifying plants.

More about Why Scientific Naming can sometimes appear contradictory

Herbariums (at each of the botanic gardens) have always been influential in the naming of plants.

Problem is that as more people have become interested and involved with plants, large organizations (plant societies, horticultural associations, professional institutes) sometimes don't agree with the herbaria or botanic gardens.

Plant labeling companies sometimes don't print changed names on labels; preferring to continue selling already printed labels with old names.

Botanical and Horticultural Scientists sometimes come into conflict.

 "When I visited Honalulu Botanic Gardens 10 years or so ago, I met the director who was from Capetown South Africa. We disacovered that the two of us conflicted on a few names. After a bit of discussion it emerged that Honalulu (and his former employer in South Africa) were adhering to directions from the International Horticultural Congress who claimed to be the legitimate descendents (so to speak) of Linneaus. Interestingly though, on returning to Australia, the Botanists in Australia refute that and say their congress has the authority and the horticulturists are usurpers". (Quote: John Mason, 2006)

You need to be careful to make allowances and promote the taxonomic system as being the best and most accurate method of plant ID, but to point out that it can still occasionally have glitches due to these sorts of issues.

As you can see, there is more to naming plants than what first meets the eye.

 

HOW CAN THIS COURSE BENEFIT YOU?

If you already have the basics of horticulture - you may have completed Horticulture 1 or you may have completed a horticulture course elsewhere but realise your identification skills need improving then this course is for you. This course is a must if you:

  • Work in a retail or wholesale nursery
  • Want to extend your professional development
  • Work in any aspect of horticulture such as gardening, grounds management, parks and gardens
  • Would just like to improve your plant identification skills for your own pleasure and expansion.

 



Meet some of our academics

Rosemary Davies Leading horticultural expert in Australia. Rosemary trained in Horticultural Applied Science at Melbourne University. Initially she worked with Agriculture Victoria as an extension officer, taught horticulture students, worked on radio with ABC radio (clocking up over 24 years as a presenter of garden talkback programs, initially the only woman presenter on gardening in Victoria) and she simultaneously developed a career as a writer. She then studied Education and Training, teaching TAFE apprentices and developing curriculum for TAFE, before taking up an offer as a full time columnist with the Herald and Weekly Times and its magazine department after a number of years as columnist with the Age. She has worked for a number of companies in writing and publications, PR community education and management and has led several tours to Europe. In 1999 Rosemary was BPW Bendigo Business Woman of the Year and is one of the founders and the Patron, of the Friends of the Bendigo Botanic gardens. She has completed her 6th book this year and is working on concepts for several others. Rosemary has a B Ed, BSc Hort, Dip Advertising & Marketing
John Mason Parks Manager, Nurseryman, Landscape Designer, Garden Writer and Consultant. Over 40 years experience; working in Victoria, Queensland and the UK. He is one of the most widely published garden writers in the world; author of more than 70 books and editor for 4 different gardening magazines. John has been recognised by his peers being made a fellow of the Institute of Horticulture in the UK, as well as by the Australian Institute of Horticulture.
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

Growing & Knowing Flowering BulbsWith 187 pages the Growing and Knowing Flowering Bulbs ebook is a great foundation on growing bulbs and includes a colour glossary of flowering bulbs. This ebook is a great read for students, professional horticulturalists and gardeners.
Growing and Using Perennial PlantsWhen designed and grown well, a perennial garden produces a blaze of colour for many months – starting in spring, flourishing through summer, and beyond into autumn.
Trees and ShrubsA great little encyclopaedia that is valuable for students, tradespeople, or the home gardener needing a quick reference when selecting garden plants. It covers the care and culture of 140 commonly grown genera of trees and shrub, plus many hundreds of species and cultivars. 169 colour photos 94 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.