The best certificate in horticulture course available!
Save $$$ from the online course fees for a limited time.
WAS $3114.10 NOW $2675.20 - Australia
SAVE over $430
WAS $2831.00 NOW $2432.00 - Outside Australia
OPEN UP YOUR POSSIBILITIES IN HORTICULTURE - THIS COURSE DOES THAT FOR YOU.
What will the Certificate in Horticulture crops teach you?
Learn the fundamentals of horticulture first - this opens up all
sorts of possibilities as far as future work in concerned - you can work
across broad horticulture sectors with the core units - in fact almost
any sector that a horticultural trades person would work in for example
gardening and nursery work, and the stream units further extend your
possibilities into crop growing for example:
- Row Crops
- Plantations and orchards
- Broad acre crops
The stream units focuses you on learning how to grow a variety of crops:
- Lots of different crops
- With lots of different techniques
- In lots of different places
WHERE COULD YOU WORK?
- In a production nursery
- As a crop grower
- On a farm
- In an orchard
- At a farm supplier
- Crop processing
- Marketing, education and media
- Urban farming
Most graduates are likely to
work in cropping, but for those who change their ambitions and direction
over the duration of the course, your studies will be far from wasted as
your core studies will allow you to move across industry sectors
Some may use this course as a starting point to
develop a career in something a little different such as urban farming,
permaculture design or horticultural therapy.
For others, opportunities may arise throughout the course. Often we
hear of students who have met people in the industry through their
studies; and been offered jobs. Yet others may begin a small business in
crop production while studying. By the time they graduate, they are
already on a path to ever increasing success.
Note that each module in the Certificate In Horticulture (Crops) is a
short course in its own right, and may be studied separately.
EXAMPLE OF WHAT YOU WILL LEARN IN THIS COURSE
Controlling Pests -with or without chemicals
Chemicals are still widely used in horticultural crop production; but
even those farms that do use chemicals; the use is less than in the
past; and the extremely toxic chemicals are less widely used.
Nevertheless, there is an increasing trend toward organic farming, with
no use of dangerous chemicals at all.
There are ways to grow plants without using dangerous chemicals. The
finished product might have a few chew marks, but it will also be a much
safer plant for you and your family to be around or use.
Natural or biological control is when we use living things such as
predators or parasites to attack, harm or deter pests, diseases or weed
problems. The concept of natural control is not new. In the late
1800’s the California citrus industry was nearly wiped out by a parasite
known as Cottony Cushion Scale (Icerya purchasi). This scale
is apparently an Australian native transported to California on acacia
plants: it took around ten years to become a serious pest of the citrus
groves in southern California.
The importation of a small number of Vedalia (Rodolia cardinalis)
beetles (related to ladybird beetles) from Australia virtually
eradicated this pest very quickly, and now keeps it in check to this
day. A similar case occurred when a tiny moth known as Cactoblastis cactorum
was introduced to Australia to control Prickly Pear cactus which at one
stage, early in the 20th century, covered tens of millions of acres of
pasture and semi arid land, particularly in Queensland and NSW.
Approaches to natural control might include:
- The introduction of parasites and predators, where natural
enemies are introduced to control exotic pests or weeds, as in the case
of Cottony Cushion Scale, which was introduced to California, from
overseas, without its natural predators.
- Conservation of existing natural enemies by, for example,
changing spraying programmes such as using selective chemicals, or by
changing the time of day when spraying takes place, as some insects are
active at different times of the day, and by reducing the rates of the
chemicals that we use: Note: it is not always possible just to stop
spraying – it is often necessary to build up the natural enemies to a
useful level first. Another method of conserving natural enemies is to
change the way in which you crop your plants. This can be done by such
methods as staggering planting times to reduce the impact of having a
crop all at one stage when it may be more prone to attack or
infestation; by the use of companion plants; by increasing crop
diversity, by mixing crop species and by maintaining groundcover in
orchards to promote parasite habitats.
- New natural enemies can be developed by scientists either
growing larger numbers of predators or parasites or by adding additional
numbers of natural enemies collected or purchased from elsewhere. The
production and marketing of biological control agents has now become a
major business in Europe and the USA, with small scale activity also in
- Companion Planting: The concept of companion planting is
sometimes controversial. Some growers swear by it, and others consider
it pure fantasy. The truth may be somewhere in between. Companion
planting involves growing plants together to provide a beneficial
effect; where characteristics of one plant might help deter pests or
diseases which normally attack its neighbour, or may act as host to
organisms that are predators of particular pests and diseases: Note that
different growing conditions and locations may affect the success or
failure of companion planting. Examples are:
- Coriander, (Coriandrum sativum), repels aphids, spider mites and potato beetle:
- The roots of French Marigold (Tagetes patula) exude a substance which spreads in their immediate vicinity killing nematodes:.
- Planting carrots and leeks together may confuse insects by the
blending of scents, and the leeks repel carrot fly and carrots repel
onion fly and leek moth.
Other approaches to biocontrol that are being actively researched are
the development of plants with increased resistance to pests and
diseases; the use of natural chemicals such as hormones or sex scents to
either attract (to a trap or away from plants), repel or kill the
problem pest: the use of sterile insects to upset reproductive cycles
and the use of plant derivatives, such as pyrethrum, as pesticides.
Advantages of Biological Control
- It does not damage crops, in contrast to some chemicals.
- It does not leave a residue as is the case with many chemicals.
- There are no crop-withholding periods, so you do not have to wait to harvest crops.
- It is less costly than chemicals, and biocontrol may continue to
be effective long after the original application as predator or
parasite breeding occurs, unlike chemicals, which are either rendered
inert on contact with the ground or have short residual periods.
- Biocontrol agents often spread outside their original
application area controlling pests and diseases over large expanses of
- Pests are unlikely to build up resistance to biocontrol.
- Biocontrol is usually specific to the targeted pest or disease and generally doesn't affect other organisms.
Disadvantages of Biological Control
- Often very slow acting in comparison to chemicals and an effective population of controlling agents may take years to build up.
- The degree of control is often not as high as with chemical control.
- It is often very hard finding predators or parasites of some
pests, particularly ones that are specific to a particular pest or
disease, rather than to a number of organisms.
- The ability of many biocontrol agents to move from one location
to another can sometimes be a disadvantage. A pest or disease that may
be a problem in one area may be desired in another. This can be seen in
the case of blackberries which are grown commercially for their
berries, but are also a noxious weed in some places. Blackberry rust,
recently bought into Australia as a biocontrol agent for this plant, may
affect the commercial crops. Another example is the case of Pattersons
curse, (Echium plantagineum), which is a noxious weed in some
parts of Australia and a useful pasture species in other parts.
Attempts to release a biocontrol agent for this plant resulted in a
Supreme Court case aimed at preventing its release.
The advantages of biological control often outweigh the
disadvantages, certainly in the long term if not in the short term.
Biocontrol is, now more than ever before, being actively promoted by
many governments, agricultural and forestry departments, etc worldwide.
Even as early as 1988 at least $165 million was saved on pesticide
costs, by United States farmers alone, because of biological control.
The benefits to the environment are even greater.
AFTER YOU GRADUATE YOU WILL:
- Know a great deal more about how to grow crops
- Have such a solid and broad based understanding of horticulture,
- Ability to adapt to and work in any sector of the horticulture industry enhanced.
Crop production is an industry that is never going away. So long as
people keep eating, there will always be a need for people with
expertise in growing crops..
This course is beyond what you would learn in a Trade Certificate in
Horticultural Crop Production. It teaches you everything a tradesman
would learn about plant culture - and more science, plus more plant
identification than what an average trades person would know.
See below for advice on how we can help you achieve this great qualification:
|Member Nursery and Garden Industry Association|
|ACS is recognised by the International Accreditation and Recognition Council|
|ACS is a Preferred Member Training Provider with the Australian Institute of Horticulture. ACS students meeting AIH criteria can join AIH as a Category 2 student member. http://www.aih.org.au/|
|Member since 1986|