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The Specialist Plant Course

This course aims to provide a deeper understanding of current planting ideas and plant combinations. A proportion of the days on this course involve visits to well established gardens and plant collections. National plant collections and notable private gardens are visited to look at both the plant species and the many cultivars available to garden designers and gardeners. Each visit is hosted by either holders of plant collections, garden and nursery owners or head gardeners who share their expert knowledge on their plants.

The Syllabus

The course covers the following subjects over a total of 10 days.

  • Plant identification, plant families and plant naming as stipulated by The Royal Horticultural Society with reference to the gardens and plant collections visited

  • Choosing the right plant for the right place

  • Gardens with historical links

  • Understanding relevance of National Plant collections

  • Plant hybridizing

  • Importance of plant conservation and native garden worthy plants

  • Seasonal plants with the best species and cultivars available

  • Herbarium visits and understanding plant recording

  • Plant hunters and plant collecting

Course Dates

Remaining dates in academic Year 2023-2024​

  • Thursday 7th March

  • Thursday 11th April

  • Thursday 9th May

  • Thursday 6th June

Academic Year 2024-2025 - *APPLICATION INTAKE NOW OPEN*

  • Thursday 12th September 2024

  • Thursday 10th October

  • Thursday 7th November

  • Thursday 5th December

  • Thursday 9th January 2025

  • Thursday 6th February

  • Thursday 6th March

  • Thursday 10th April

  • Thursday 8th May

  • Thursday 5th June

Course Fees

The fees for the course are £1295 and are payable in full before the beginning of the autumn term. A place is confirmed on the course by sending a non-refundable deposit for £100 together with the completed application form.

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