Plant Varieties Courses

Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence

Garden School - Distance Learning

Become an Expert with Wattles

Acacias grow naturally through Australia and Africa, through to parts of Asia and America.

Learn about the identification and botany, and culture (planting, watering, feeding, propagation) of the wattles. Around 50 species are studied in detail. You also learn about the commercial uses of Acacias as building materials, food plants, for tanning, craft, etc.  

“There are so many uses for these fantastic plants. Learning all about them is so very helpful for land rehabilitation and even hobbies.” - Tracey Morris Dip.Hort., Cert.Hort., Cert III Organic Farming, ACS Tutor.


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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence

GROW AND KNOW AFRICAN VIOLETS and their Relatives

Designed for the African Violet enthusiast this indepth unique course will teach you about:

  • propagation of african violets
  • cultivation health of african violets & pests
  • commerical aspects of growing african violets
  • You learn how African Violets are classified, and cover the exciting range of varieties available.

Here's your chance to achieve outstanding results with African Violets.


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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence
Become an Australian Fern Expert

Learn which ferns occur naturally in Australia, how to identify them, where to obtain accurate information on them, how to propagate them, growing and using ferns in baskets, terrariums, and landscapes.

  • There are eight lessons including a special project in this course.  This course is designed as a detailed look at identification and culture of Australian Native Ferns. 
  • Learn propagation techniques
  • Learn classification
  • Emphasis is placed on the horticulturally valuable species
  • Study from and at your own pace

Comment from ACS Student: I wondered at first if I could have learned what I needed to know just by reading up on ferns.  But I would never have agained the knowledge or interest simply through reading.  The assignments have made me look far more closely at what I'm doing." Sandra Crump, Australia, Australian Native Ferns course.


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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 9 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence This course can be studied Online Online This course can be studied through E-Learning E-Learning

Learn How to Grow Australian Native Plants by Distance Learning

Australia has one of the oldest and most diverse varieties of plants of an country. Australian natives come from tropical areas to cold temperate snow covered mountains, and from inland deserts to fertile wet rainforests. Develop your ability to identify, select, cultivate and plan a management program, for appropriate varieties of Australian native plants, in a wide variety of situations.  This course is relevant to any part of Australia, and equally to most other parts of the world.

Students learn:

  • to identify hundreds of different species, know how to grow them better, build your contacts with industry, discover an abundance of opportunities to work more with these amazing plants.
  • to grow and care for Australian Natives.
  • about commerical applications for Australian Native plants and much more in this unique home study course.

“Learn about the amazing plants native to this great red land. Together our horticulture tutors have decades of experience with Australian Natives, so this is your first port of call if you’re interested in knowing more. There are so many important uses for them in our gardens.” - Tracey Morris Dip.Hort., Cert.Hort., Cert III Organic Farming, ACS Tutor.


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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence This course can be studied Online Online This course can be studied through E-Learning E-Learning
LEARN ABOUT AUSTRALIAN WILDFLOWERS, SHRUBS & GROUNDCOVERS

This course deals with both woody (hard wooded) and herbaceous (soft wooded), low growing Australian Native Plants, which bear showy wildflowers.   
  • Learn about Australia's beautiful wildflowers including cultivation and commercial applications.

 

  • Develop your ability to identify, select, cultivate and explain commercial applications for appropriate varieties of low growing Australian native flowering plants in a variety of situations.

Comment from one of our Australian Natives II students:
"The plant recognition assignments were challenging and a great help for the future" D. Sydenham  


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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence
Considered by many to be the very best plants a garden can offer, azaleas and rhododendrons are some of the most popular plants grown anywhere. The course shows how to grow them to perfection, and builds your knowledge of varieties available, to give you a long lasting display of colour in the garden. Soils, weed control, feeding, pest and disease control, watering, landscape design and lots more are included over eight lessons.

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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence This course can be studied Online Online This course can be studied through E-Learning E-Learning

Study our comprehensive Bonsai Course!

Join the many who have learnt the ancient oriental art of bonsai through this practical and comprehensive course. Eight lessons cover the selection of plants suited to bonsai, understanding the history and classic shapes which form the basis of the art, techniques of planting, training, pruning, watering & feeding and ways of using bonsai both indoors and outdoors. You will create several bonsai of your own during the course and receive constructive criticism from your tutor as they help you develop your own personal bonsai style and techniques.

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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence This course can be studied Online Online This course can be studied through E-Learning E-Learning

Learn about identifying, growing and using Australian Indigenous Plants for Food
There are many Australian plants that are edible, and even some that are in very high demand as foods throughout the world.  The Aborigines lived off the land before white civilization came to Australia. Plants contributed significantly to their diet. Many of these are now being grown commercially; others are increasingly used by home gardeners, and culinary explorers across the world.  There are many different types of bush tucker foods:

  • Nuts and seeds (eg. Acacia, Macadamia, bunya nuts)
  • Drinks (eg. hot teas, infusions of nectar laden flowers, fruit juices)
  • Flavourings (eg. lemon scented myrtle)
  • Berries (eg. Astroloma, some Solanum species)
  • Fruits (eg. quandong, Ficus macrophylla, Syzygium)
  • Vegetables
  • Wattle seeds ground to produce ‘flour’
  • Plant roots ground to produce a paste or flour.

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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence
Its been said that people either love cacti or hate them. For lovers of cacti and succulents, this comprehensive 8 lesson course is a must. The course studies major cacti & succulent groups and the differences in how to treat plants from each; in terms of soils, feeding, watering, pruning, pest control, planting procedures and more. It will stimulate your interest, and set you on the path to becoming an expert with these unique plants.

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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 9 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence
These fascinating plants provide entertainment and stimulation to the enthusiast. Nine lessons cover a range of cultivated carnivorous plants, paying particular attention to the Pitcher Plants (Nepenthes) and Sundews (Drosera).

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Duration icon 600 hours Qualification icon Certificate Modules icon 6 modules This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence

Plant knowledge is fundamental to horticulture and yet with changes to the horticultural education generally, many courses on offer today do not cover this adequately. All our horticulture courses focus on the importance of plant knowledge and identification - we have not joined the trend!

This course will give you  important and valuable knowledge that not many in the field will offer - this improves your opportunities and will help you advance in the industry.

This course in particular, lays a foundation, sharpening your knowledge and skills for identifying plants and then progresses to build the scope of plants you are able to identify.

At the end of this course you will be able to look at plants with greater focus, naturally seeing the characteristics that differentiate one plant from others; you will have the ability to place it into a group (family or genus) which exhibits those characteristics. Plant identification will become much easier - you will be able to  work out a plant's classification, even if you do not know precisely what it is.

 

Use the link below ('read more') to view more comprehensive details on this course.


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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 9 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence

Be a Conifer Expert

Eight lessons provide you with a systematic understanding of the way conifers are classified, show you how to identify the differences between types and develop your understanding of cultural requirements common to the whole group and differences in cultural techniques needed for specific types of conifers. Sections of this course look in detail at trees (e.g. Pines, Cedrus, Spruce), small shrubs, medium shrubs, native conifers and rarer varieties.

"Unlike many other plants; most conifers are grown for their year round, stunning and varied foliage affects rather than their seasonal flower displays. Grow conifers in places that you want to look stunning all year round, and not just part of the year"  John Mason, author of Growing Conifers, published by Kangaroo Press.

 


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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence

Eucalyptus calophylla“They are not just ‘Gum trees’ as they are known in Australia. They are an important part of the natural landscape and grow all over the world. Learn all about this Aussie Icon from the experts.”- Tracey Morris Dip.Hort., Cert.Hort., Cert III Organic Farming, ACS Tutor.

Learn about Eucalyptus : their identification, culture (propagation, soils, landscape uses, pests, feeding), and uses. Throughout the course you build both a knowledge of the group as a whole, and of the range of species you can identify. Eucalypts are today widely grown throughout the world, despite the fact that they are predominantly an Australian native plant (Note: There are only a small number of species which occur naturally outside of Australia). In many countries Eucalypts are used extensively as a forest tree, for land rehabilitation or even as an ornamental plant. There are more than five hundred different species of Eucalypts, varying from relatively low shrubby plants to massive tall trees.

Image: Eucalyptus calophylla



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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence
“You can learn so much about ferns from this course. They are such an incredible plant; able to live in such varied conditions, from tropical rainforests to freezing mountain tops. Ferns are so popular, and there is such a range of them, this course provides invaluable knowledge when it comes to planning or adding to your own garden, or other peoples’ gardens.” - Tracey Morris Dip.Hort., Cert.Hort., Cert III Organic Farming, ACS Tutor.

A detailed look at the identification and culture of ferns. You learn to propagate (spores, division, tissue culture), different groupings (e.g. epiphytes, ground ferns, tree ferns) and both common & uncommon species. Growing techniques (baskets, indoor/outdoor containers, terrariums) and cultural methods (soils, watering, pest & disease control) are also examined.

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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence
Learn everything you ever wanted to know about fuchsias, from soil management and feeding to pruning and propagation. Discover how fuchsias are classified into several major groups, the characteristics of those groups and how/where to grow different types to achieve the best results.

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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence
Annuals are a valuable horticultural crop grown commercially as cut flowers, as seedlings or as advanced pots of colour.  With careful choice,  versatile annuals can deliver year round colour in the home garden. They work to fill gaps between perennials, they can be used to disguise the messy foliage of bulbs as they seasonally die-off,  and they can help to keep gardens or parks in the peak of perfection. This eight lesson course reveals the secrets of how to identify annual species,  what to grow and when to grow each variety. It covers soil improvement,  pest control, irrigation, propagation, greenhouse growing, hydroponics and much more. It is equally as useful to the home gardener and to the professional gardener as to those intending to grow annuals commercially.

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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence

Study How to Grow Camellias at Home

Did you know: Tea leaves are derived from the plant Camellia sinensis?
 
Beautiful camellias require little attention, once established, and yet there is so much to know about them.
Learn about the different groups of camellias:
  • japonicas
  • sasanquas
  • reticulatas
Study their special characteristics, and their culture.  This course will also develop your understanding of soils, feeding, watering, pruning, planting methods, pest and disease control, propagation and more.
 
Improve your ability to identify different varieties (both common and uncommon), and how to use camellias to achieve desired landscape effects.
 
A great course for anyone working in gardening or landscaping or for the home gardener.

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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence
Become a Carnation Expert

A serious course equally valuable to the home enthusiast or the commercial cut flower grower. You learn about growing quality carnations (planting, watering, pest & disease control, fertilizing), different ways of growing them (e.g. as row crops in soil, in hydroponics, in a greenhouse); and harvesting, post-harvest treatments, and quality control.


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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence
“There are so many of these wonderful colourful plants in our gardens today. Not only are they striking to look at, they also attract birdlife. It really is worth getting to know them a little bit better.” - Tracey Morris Dip.Hort., Cert.Hort., Cert III Organic Farming, ACS Tutor.

Become an expert on Grevilleas.
This course provides a thorough grounding in identifying, growing and using grevilleas.

There are more than 250 species of Grevillea and hundreds if not thousands of different varieties and hybrids, many probably not yet named.
  • About 50% of all Grevilleas are tropical.
  • The majority of species are stenobasic (ie. having more or less one dominant stem or trunk).
  • Twenty of the known species are trees.
  • 176 of the known species are shrubs
  • 17 of the known species are prostrate shrubs

 

Known commonly as “Spider Flowers”; the Grevillea flower is more like a brush than a traditional flower. It has obscure petals, but is none the less very colourful. Flower colour varies greatly; and most hold their flowers for a long period.

Grevilleas include both small to very large plants (from prostrate ground covers, through small and medium shrubs up to large trees).


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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence
This is a valuable course for anyone with a serious interest in irises either as a commercial grower or an enthusiastic home collector. You will gain an in-depth appreciation of the iris, how to grow them to achieve optimum results and the identification of different varieties of irises. Significant sections are included on landscaping with irises, hybridisation and propagation, harvest, post-harvest treatments, achieving and assessing quality, and exhibiting the flowers.

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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence This course can be studied Online Online This course can be studied through E-Learning E-Learning

Distance Learning Course : Indoor Plants

  • Learn to identify hundreds of indoor plants systematically and easier
  • Learn how to grow plants inside, their care and use
  • Indulge your passion or increase your commercial skills

This is a course equally applicable to the professional interior plantscaper or the home owner (or interior decorator) who aspires to achieve the very best results with their indoor plants. You will learn about the main family groups indoor plants fall into, the cultural requirements and general characteristics of each of those groups, and from there develop the ability to select the right plant for the right situation. Many types of growing methods are covered (in pots, baskets, hydroponics, terrariums, greenhouses), as well as soil mixes, propagation, pest control, feeding and lots more.

“Indoor plantscaping and care is a great profession to get into, and this course will help you to build the required knowledge to be able to maintain these plants – both commercially and in the home.”- Tracey Morris Dip.Hort., Cert.Hort., Cert III Organic Farming, ACS Tutor.


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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence This course can be studied Online Online This course can be studied through E-Learning E-Learning
Develop your knowledge of orchids, their culture and uses.
Get the broad picture of what orchids are all about and learn how to improve your results and grow flowers which will be the envy of all who see them.
Course developed by John Mason (author of Growing Orcjhids, published by Hyland House). Tutors include expert professional horticulturists from Australia, N.Z. and the U.K.

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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence

Become an expert in palms and cycads.

Throughout this course you will learn to distinguish between the characteristics of different types of palms and cycads.
Learn the general cultural practices required to grow palms and cycads including propagation and appropriate pest and disease treatments.
Discover how to choose palms and cycads to suit different climatic situation; how to use them in the landscape and their various commercial applications.   

“These amazing plants present so many opportunities. Benefit from our course writers’ and tutors’ decades of horticultural experience when you take this course - it’s worth getting to know these plants a lot better!”- Tracey Morris Dip.Hort., Cert.Hort., Cert III Organic Farming, ACS Tutor.


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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence
Learn to Grow Pelargoniums and Geraniums.
 
This course is designed for the enthusiastic amateur; the professional nurseryman, plant breeder, collector, or anyone else who has a passionate interest in pelargoniums and geraniums.

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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence
Practical and versatile perennials.

Perennials come in all forms, from herbaceous plants that die down in the winter and re-emerge in spring (year after year), to plants that retain their soft-stemmed leafy growth year round. Although beautiful, many perennials are also tough and very much adapted to a variety of climates - ranging from very dry to wet. Some have colourful foliage as well as beautiful flowers, others add architectural interest - but all add excitement and diversity to the landscape or garden as they burst into flower each year. Discover what perennials are, which perennial plants are most popular today, their cultural requirements (ie. feeding, watering, soil requirements, pruning, pest control), and learn how to use them to create beautiful  landscapes. A course equally valuable to landscapers, nurserymen, cut flower growers and garden enthusiasts.

 


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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence
Learn where and how to grow one of the most stunning groups of plants in the world. With the right cultural techniques (e.g. proper drainage, soil treatments, irrigation methods, feeding, pruning, weed control), you can achieve top quality, large blooms in what might otherwise be considered poor horticultural conditions.

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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 8 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence This course can be studied Online Online This course can be studied through E-Learning E-Learning

For the rose enthusiast - this unique and comprehensive course is equally relevant to professional and amateur growers.

Roses, often referred to as 'The Queen of the Garden', are one of the most popular and prized ornamental plants. They are included in the greatest gardens in the world  and many claim roses to be the most beautiful flower in existence.

 

 

The  value of their blooms however extends beyond the ornamental garden; roses are grown for many reasons including: the cut flower trade, for perfume extraction, to harvest the hips and for rose oil. This course covers all these aspects and much more. Learn the history of the rose, the confusing rose classification system, how to identify the different species, their general cultural needs (soils, pests and disease management and pruning), how to use roses in garden design and how to produce a commercial rose crop.

This course is definitely a must for the rose lover.

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Duration icon 100 hours Qualification icon Statement of Attainment Lessons icon 10 lessons This course can be studied via Correspondence Correspondence This course can be studied Online Online This course can be studied through E-Learning E-Learning


Learn where and how to grow tropical plants.
This course provides valuable instruction for growing plants in warm places or in protected places such as greenhouses  and inside homes or offices.
Some people would think a tropical is a plant that comes from the tropics. Others might consider tropical to also include plants from sub tropical places. This course is concentrating on plants which originate from tropical or sub tropical climates; but there may be some plants covered which fit a looser definition of “tropical”.

 

This course covers:  plant names/classification (scientific and common), climatic conditions, plants suited to your locality;  cultural practices: understanding soils, naming a soil, propagation, watering, feeding, pruning etc. Growing tropical plants outside the tropics and indoors - in different climates and conditions.

"This course will cover everything you need to know to successfully grow these beautiful and unusual plants, and you don’t necessarily have to live in a warm climate to have tropical plants; there are plenty of ways of adapting the environmental conditions to suit them.”- Tracey Morris Dip.Hort., Cert.Hort., Cert III Organic Farming, ACS Tutor.

It also covers the following plant types: tropical annuals, perennials, bulbous plants, bamboos, lawns, climbers. shrubs and trees also ornamental gingers and heliconias and related plants; cordylines, palms and cycads, orchids, ferns, aroids and bromeliads; tropical herbs, vegetables and fruit bearing plants.

Discover: how to landscape with tropical plants and how to use colour and texture; how to select appropriate plants; how to plant a courtyard and prepare sketch plans.

A very versatile and comprehensive course!

 




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