ACS Distance Education UK
The ACS Course "PROPAGATION I” is based upon the following curriculum documentation. It was originally written to cover everything you see here; but has over the years been revised and expanded beyond this on several occasions.
Click here to see an outline and enrolment details for this course.
Discipline Group Code
Successful completion of this module may develop the learner's abilities to perform and manage the commercial propagation of a wide variety of plants, using a range of different propagation skills.
Core units/modules need to be successfully completed before commencing this module.
This unit may be taken individually in its own right, in which case the learner is expected to have a basic understanding of propagation, before commencing the module.
Relationship to Competency Standards
All tasks shall comply with relevant practices and procedures set out by industrial awards and relevant Australian standards where appropriate (see section 3.2 of documentation).
Australian Competency Standards appropriate to this module include:
* Nursery (NUR113), (NUR114), (NUR115), (NUR122)
Focus should be on the learning outcomes and not on content. Some topics may not require in-depth teaching in this module as they will be addressed fully elsewhere.
In achieving the learning outcomes, the following topics should be addressed:
* general propagation
* seed propagation
* cutting propagation
* other techniques
* propagation media, materials and structures
* propagation management
The learner will visit various sites, including relevant workplaces; to observe, inspect or interview employees or management. Through these visits, the learner will develop their awareness of workplaces and practical applications for the subject.
(refer to Document 1, section 5.1)
The learning outcome may be assessed through:
* short answers;
* definition of terminology;
* practical tasks;
* examination of 1.5 hrs.
Conditions of assessment
Assessment is based on successfully completing all set tasks, assignments and any other assessment methods listed above. Examinations will consolidate lessons to assess the learning progress of students. It will also act as a method of ensuring students meet the outcomes.
Learning Outcome 1
Develop the ability to source information on plant propagation, through an awareness of industry terminology and information sources.
1.1 Differentiate between applications for sexual with those of asexual methods of propagation.
1.2 Briefly explain sixty different propagation terms, including:
*Endospermic *Seed viability *Growth hormone
*Basal wounding *Bottom heat *Interstock
*In vitro *Nurse graft *Stool bed.
1.3 Contact and liaise with industry representatives, by attending a propagation industry meeting and reporting on that meeting.
1.4 Develop a resource collection of forty catalogues and brochures of nursery services, which includes:
*Seed suppliers *Propagation equipment *Greenhouses
*Professional/trade associations and publications.
Conditions and method of assessment
The learner will attend an industry meeting, such as a seminar or routine meeting conducted by the International Plant Propagators Society or the Nursery Industry Association. They will be required to report on the nature of the meeting, provide names of at least two different industry professionals they spoke with, and provide a receipt or some other proof of their attendance.
Relevant standards or extracts will be made available to students for reference during lessons.
Same as Conditions of assessment.
Learning Outcome 2
Plan the propagation of different plant species from seeds, using different seed propagation methods.
2.1 Determine appropriate industry applications for different seed sources, including:
*Seed collection from the wild
*Herbarium seed exchanges
*Commercial seed suppliers
*Seed collection from cultivated stock plants.
2.2 Explain three different techniques used to overcome specified problems in collecting seed.
2.3 Explain the application of six different methods of storing different types of seed, including:
*Cold moist storage.
2.4 Explain different techniques for maintaining genetic identity of seed, including:
*Hybrid seed production
2.5 Describe different pre-germination techniques, including:
*Water treatments (e.g. soaking, hot water).
2.6 Determine appropriate techniques for seed propagation of forty different plant species.
2.7 Collect, process and store seed from four different plants, including:
*an annual *a native *a legume *a deciduous tree.
2.8 Develop procedures for the production of five specified plants from seed, including:
*seed collection, *sowing *germination *care of seedling *pricking out/potting.
2.9 Propagate plants using two of the different types of seeds collected in 2.7.
The learner will require:
-access to different types of plants from which to collect seed;
-facilities to collect, process and store seed collected;
-necessary facilities to propagate some of the seeds collected.
The learner will be provided with a sample operational flow chart, upon which they may base the charts they develop. They will need to research the procedure followed in the production of five different plants, in order to develop five more charts.
Assessment will include:
* samples of seed collected, properly processed and packaged;
* samples of germinated seedlings from two different plant species;
* written assignments;
Learning Outcome 3
Plan the propagation of different types of plants from cuttings, using different cutting propagation methods.
3.1 Prepare stem cuttings for twenty different types of plants.
3.2 Prepare six different types of cuttings, including:
*Leaf cuttings *Leaf bud cuttings *Root cuttings
*Tip cuttings *Semi-hardwood cuttings *Hardwood cuttings.
3.3 Analyse the results of a trial to determine efficiencies in cutting production.
3.4 Determine the advantages and disadvantages of cutting propagation compared with other propagation techniques.
3.5 Explain techniques for improving cutting success, including:
*Heat *Fog *Mist *Plastic tent/bell jar *Hormone *Basal wounding
for twenty different species.
3.6 Develop criteria for selecting appropriate cutting propagation material.
3.7 Prepare operational flow charts which summarise procedures for the propagation of five different plant species from cuttings.
The learner will conduct a cutting propagation experiment, which incorporates a control and variables including: -hormone treatment -part of plant used -amount of leaf left on cutting -basal wounding -light exposure during strike -humidity exposure.
-access to plants to take cuttings from
-access to propagation facilities including; propagation media, containers, clear plastic bags, rooting hormone, secateurs, knife.
* samples of prepared stem cuttings
* samples of leaf bud, leaf and root cuttings
* samples of rooted cuttings
* written assignments
Learning Outcome 4
Plan the propagation of various types of plants using a range of propagation techniques, excluding cuttings and seed.
4.1 Demonstrate three different grafting techniques, including budding.
4.2 Explain the botanical processes involved in grafting, including both anatomy and physiology.
4.3 List twenty-five plant species which are commercially grown by grafting (including budding), including appropriate rootstocks for each species.
4.4 Describe how to propagate twenty specified plants using non-standard techniques, including:
*Air layering *Division *Separation.
4.5 Propagate a plant using a layering technique in soil to industry acceptable standards.
4.6 Summarise a typical procedure used to propagate a plant by tissue culture.
4.7 Write operational flow charts which summarise procedures for the propagation of two different plant species by two different techniques, including grafting.
*access to a variety of suitable plants
*access to adequate facilities to propagate by grafting and layering.
The learner will be provided with a sample operational flow chart (approximately 1 page in length), upon which they may base the charts they develop. They will need to research the procedure followed in the production of five different plants, in order to develop five more charts.
Proficiency in performing propagation techniques (eg. grafting) ,may be verified by submission of prepared samples, and a written letter of verification from a qualified assessor who has observed the learner undertaking required tasks.
Assessment may include:
* samples of two types of budding;
* samples of three types of grafting;
* sample of aerial layer;
* rooted sample of layer;
* letter of verification;
Learning Outcome 5
Determine the necessary facilities, including materials and equipment, required for propagation of different types of plants.
5.1 Differentiate between three different proprietary brands of potting and/or propagation media.
5.2 Prepare a propagating media mix, for a specified use.
5.3 Prepare a tubestock media mix for a specified use.
5.4 Explain the fertilising of young plants during and/or shortly after propagation.
5.5 Explain the uses for rockwool for plant propagation.
5.6 Determine criteria for selecting plant containers for different propagation procedures.
5.7 Select appropriate containers for propagating five different plant species, using specified propagation techniques.
5.8 Evaluate three different types of containers to determine their appropriateness for growing on tubestock.
5.9 Explain appropriate applications for different structures to aid in propagation, including:
*Greenhouses *Shadehouses *Cold frames *Plastic tents.
5.10 Explain the appropriate use of environmental control equipment to aid propagation, including:
*Heating *Cooling *Ventilation *Misting
*Capillary matting *Fog.
Learners will require:
-components to prepare different potting media;
-access to different types of plant containers.
Different potting media mixes will be prepared by the student, and samples of prepared media will be assessed.
Learning Outcome 6
Determine a procedure to minimise plant losses during propagation.
6.1 List health risks commonly faced by plants during propagation, including:
*Pest species *Disease species *Environmental factors.
6.2 Determine chemical pesticides to control ten different pests or diseases, which commonly attack plants during propagation.
6.3 Describe two ways of treating cuttings, to minimise disease problems during propagation.
6.4 Evaluate a procedures used to control pests & diseases in a propagation nursery visited by the learner.
6.5 Determine guidelines for controlling pests and diseases in a propagation nursery visited by the learner.
6.6 Determine appropriate nursery hygiene procedures for two different propagation nurseries.
6.7 Determine factors other than pests and diseases which impact upon plant losses in a nursery visited by the learner.
* access to propagation nurseries, to visit and investigate methods used by those nurseries to minimise plant losses.
Learning Outcome 7
Determine the management practices of significance to the commercial viability of a propagation nursery.
7.1 Determine criteria for selecting a site for a propagation nursery.
7.2 Determine the supplies which need to be regularly purchased for the day to day operation, of a propagation facility visited by the learner.
7.3 Estimate weekly operational costs for a specified propagation facility over a twelve month period.
7.4 List management issues which are relevant in a propagation nursery.
7.5 Analyse five factors which are of great significance to the economic viability of a typical propagation nursery in the learner's locality.
The learner will be supplied with a plan and specifications of a propagation facility.
They will research costs involved in the operation of that facility, and estimate the weekly running costs.
Learning Outcome 8
Design a propagation plan for the production of a plant.
8.1 Determine factors affecting the propagation process of a specified plant.
8.2 Determine different commercially viable propagation processes, for plant varieties of three different plant genera.
8.3 Determine criteria for selecting suitable plant material for propagating a specified plant.
8.4 Propagate one hundred specimens of a specified plant, recording in a log, all aspects of the propagation process, including:
*materials used *time taken for different work tasks (eg. cutting rate/hour)
*weeks from commencing propagation to achieving a saleable product.
8.5 Evaluate plant propagation tasks carried out in a visited nursery, to determine areas to improve efficiency.
8.6 Determine the stages of production from propagation to marketing, for three specified plant varieties.
8.7 Develop a procedure for propagating a specified plant.
8.8 Estimate the unit cost of production for propagating a specified plant.
8.9 Monitor and assess the growing-on stages developed by a specific nursery.
-access to facilities to propagate a plant and grow it to a marketable stage;
-access to nursery/facilities to monitor growing-on stages.
The learner will determine a plant variety to study in depth, through liaison with a tutor. A propagation plan will be developed for that plan.
Assessment will be based upon:
* log book extract;
* written reports.
Delivery of the Module
(refer to Document 1, section 6.1)
(refer to Document 1, section 6.2)
Specific requirements for this module supplied to the student:
* all manuals to complete this module and to meet competencies;
* plans and specifications appropriate to the topic of study.
Specific resources for this module the learner will provide:
* writing materials;
* video player;
* potting media components;
* propagation tools, equipment and materials to perform set tasks.
Occupational Health & Safety Requirements
(refer to Document 1, section 11)
Learners must be aware of relevant Workplace Health and Safety issues in all situations and are required to demonstrate safe working practices at all times.
The work area must comply with current Workplace Health and Safety legislation.