Certificate In Horticulture (Herbs)

This certificate is focused half on general horticulture and half on herbs, giving the broadest foundation - keeping your options open to work in any sector of horticulture; while building a specialised knowledge of herbs.

Course Code: VHT002
Fee Code: CT
Duration (approx) Duration (approx) 600 hours
Qualification Certificate
Get started!

Study for Practical Skills and a Career in Herb Production

This course teaches is half focused on learning about general horticulture; and the other half, focused on herbs. As a graduate; you have the skills to work in or start a business in any sector of horticulture; but in addition, you have a specialised training with herbs. This added, specialist learning, is designed to set you apart from your competition and give you an edge over others in industry. In today's world, you need that little "extra" thing that others don't have, and this course gives you exactly that.

QUOTES

“This is beyond what you would learn in a Trade Certificate in Horticulture. It teaches you everything a tradesman would learn about plant culture; and more science, plus more plant identification than what an average tradesperson would know” - John Mason Dip.Hort.Sc., Cert.Supn, FIOH, FPLA, Professional Horticulturist for over 40 years, Garden Author and educator

“Learn to grow plants first! This may sound simple but in reality a herb is a plant like any other, and to be truly successful in this field you will need the general horticultural knowledge offered through this terrific course. The second half of the course focuses on the diverse aspects of herb growing from medicine to farming. A wonderful course in an exciting field.” - Adriana Fraser Cert.Hort., Cert.Child Care, Adv.Cert.App.Mgt., Cert 1V Assessment and Training, Adv.Dip.Hort, ACS Tutor.
 

COURSE AIMS

  • Use the binomial system of plant classification
  • Develop a resource file for information about herbs
  • Identify a wide range of herb species and varieties, their culture and uses, and their availability
  • Study in depth the most commonly grown herb varieties, their culture and uses
  • Use herbs in a different herb crafts and foods
  • Identify medicinal and toxic chemical properties of herbs (both in general and specific terms)
  • Describe work procedures involved in operating a herb farm, including harvesting herbs and use of post-harvest treatments
  • Plan and prepare to manage a maintenance program in an ornamental garden or park
  • Design and implement a marketing program for a business operating in the herb industry.


COURSE STRUCTURE

This course is made up of the following two PARTS:

1. CORE STUDIES - at least 350 hours of study, or half the course. The student completes 15 lessons on general horticulture.

2. STREAM STUDIES - a further 300-350 hrs of study specifically on herbs. The student completes 3 additional elective modules on the cultivation, uses, and marketing of herbs.


Core Studies

These involve 15 lessons in general horticulture, as follows:

1. Introduction to Plants - Nomenclature and taxonomy, the plant kingdom, genus, species, hybrids

2. Parts of the Plant - How plants grow, plant structure, parts of the flower and leaf, modification of stems and roots

3. Plant Culture - Planting  - How to plant and protect newly planted specimens, terms like: annuals, biennials, perennials, deciduous, evergreen and herbaceous plants

4. Plant Culture - Pruning   - Purposes of pruning, rules for pruning, how to prune

5. Plant Culture - Irrigation and Machinery  - Different irrigation systems, components of an irrigation system, designing an irrigation system, maintenance in the garden and of tools

6. Soils and Media  - Soil classifications, testing soil, potting mixes, the U.C. System, ingredients of potting mixes

7. Soils and Nutrition  - Fertilisers, deficiencies and toxicities, N:P:K ratios, salting, fertiliser programming, compost

8. Propagation - Seeds and Cuttings  - How to propagate plants with the two easiest techniques, propagating mixes, cold frame construction, after care for young plants

9. Propagation - Other Techniques  - Other methods to increase plant numbers - budding, grafting, layering, division and tissue culture

10. Identification and Use of Plants - How are plants used in the landscape, how to choose and purchase plants, selecting plants suitable for the climate and site

11. Identification and Use of Plants - Problems with plants and choosing plants for problem site

12. Identification and Use of Plants - Indoor and Tropical Plants, flowers, herbs, bulbs, ferns

13. Pests - Identifying and controlling pests, chemical and natural methods for control, chemical safety precautions

14. Diseases - Identifying and controlling diseases, plant pathology, fungi, viruses, non pathogenic problems, interactions with the host and the environment

15. Weeds - Identifying and controlling weeds, chemical terminology.


Stream studies: Herbs

The stream studies are made up of three modules, as follows:

  • Herb Culture (outlined below)

PLUS any TWO of the following:

  • Aromatherapy
  • Culinary Herbs
  • Medicinal Herbs
  • Lavender
  • Scented Plants
  • Manufacturing Herbal Products.

EXAMS There are two exams for the core and 3 for the stream (one for each stream module). Exam fees are extra

 

COMPULSORY STREAM MODULE

Herb Culture

This course is divided into 12 units, each containing one or more lesson.

Unit 1: Introduction To Herb Culture

Lesson I Introduction to herbs - classification of herbs; use of a botanical key

Lesson II Cultural techniques - planting, drainage, feeding, mulching, composting, pruning

Lesson III Propagation techniques - propagation mixes, growing structures, cuttings, seed, separation and division, layering

Lesson IV Identification of plant health problems – pests, disease, frost, heat, water stress

Unit 2: Using Herbs

Lesson I Processing and uses of herbs - medicinal, culinary, perfumes, dyes, oils, distillation

Lesson II Harvesting and storage – drying; freezing, fresh storage, when and how to harvest

Unit 3: The Mints (Lamiaceae)

Lesson I Mentha species - peppermint, spearmint, applemint, wintermint, pennyroyal, corsican, ginger mint etc.

Lesson II Lavender (Lavandula varieties) and thyme (Thymus).

Lesson III : Assorted Lamiaceae varieties: Lemon Balm, Hyssop, Rosemary, Bee Balm (Monarda), Basil, Savory, Marjoram, Sage.

Unit 4: The Daisies (Asteraceae)

Lesson I : Artemisia species...Southernwood, Wormwood, Tarragon, Mugwort.

Lesson II : Miscellaneous Asteraceae: Chamomile, Tansy, Safflower, Costmary, Yarrow, Calendula, Dandelion etc.

Unit 5: The Parsley Family (Apiaceae)

Lesson I : Parsley, Coriander, Dill, Caraway, Angelica, Cumin, Fennel, Lovage, Sweet Cicely

Unit 6: The Onion Group

Lesson I : Chives, Leek, Garlic chives, Tree onion, Welsh onion, etc.

Lesson II : Garlic

Unit 7: Other Herbs

Lesson I : Rosaceae (Rose, Burnet, Strawberry, blackberry, etc)

Lesson II : Miscellaneous: Lemon grass, Lemon verbena, Bay, Sorrel, Dock, Juniper, Horseradish, Evening Primrose, etc.

Lesson III : Scented Geraniums; Australian Natives, Eucalyptus and Others

Unit 8: Pests & Diseases

Lesson I : Companion Planting

Lesson II : Natural Pest Control: Herb sprays, biological control, etc.

Unit 9: Landscaping

Lesson I : Landscape Design Principles and Practices: How to draw a landscape plan

Lesson II : Home Gardening With Herbs; Cottage gardens, hedges & borders, tubs, baskets, kitchen gardens, herb lawns, herb indoor plants.

Lesson III : Public Landscaping: Historic herb gardens (Knot gardens etc), herbs for low maintenance & colour in parks..etc.

Unit 10: Herb Farming 1

Lesson I : Establishing & Operating a Herb Nursery: Open ground vs container growing, nursery layout, potting soils, pots and labels, marketing, etc.

Unit 11: Herb Farming 11

Lesson I : Establishing & Operating a Herb Farm: Soil Preparation and management (plastic mulch, organic mulches, cultivation), row cropping.

Unit 12: Herb Farming 111

Lesson 1 : Evaluating Herb enterprises, assessing market demand. Deciding how to proceed.

 

HOW DO YOU PREPARE HERB OILS?

DISTILLATION

Herb oils are best and most commonly extracted by distillation, a process which is probably beyond most home herb gardeners. Distillation involves boiling a solution of the herb so that the oil vapourises with steam. As the vapour cools, the steam (ie: water gas) and the oil vapour will turn into liquid at different temperatures. By collecting the oil when it turns back into liquid but not collecting the steam, the two can be separated and the herb oil extracted.

Pure herb oils prepared by distillation can be purchased from craft shops or some herb nurseries.

 

USING NON AROMATIC OILS

A simpler way to create herb oils is by using non aromatic oils (eg: Olive oil or Safflower oil). These are oils that have no real odour.

Herbs can be mixed with non aromatic oils and allowed to stand for a period of weeks (or more).

The oils in the herb will to some degree penetrate the non aromatic oil giving a mixture of non aromatic oil and the herb's scents/flavour. This type of oil is weaker than that extracted by distillation, but it can still be used in much the same way as the pure herb oil can.

 

OTHER METHODS

1. Place petals from scented flowers such as Jasmine or Rose in a clean ceramic container and pour water over the top. After some weeks or months oil will appear as a filmy scum on the surface of the water. You can then use a piece of cotton wool to carefully absorb the oil from the surface of the water. The oil can then be squeezed out of the cotton wool. This is a delicate procedure which will work, but is tedious and only yields small quantities of oil.  Store in small glass vials.

2. To extract oils from fragrant woods such as cedar, sandalwood, sassafras, camphor laurel etc. Reduce the wood to shavings using a wood plane for tough woods, or garden shredder for softer woods. From there extract the oil using one of the methods outlined above.

 


HOW ARE HERBS USED?  

Herbs are used in all sorts of ways; from providing flavour in our foods to fragrance in cosmetics and toiletries. Herbs are important garden plants and the source of materials for crafts. Some are used as medicines, and others to bring a fragrance inside as an indoor pot plant or cut flower.
This course will expand your perception of what herbs can be used for what purposes, as well as how to identify and grow them.


Where to grow Lavender:


  • At a gateway or doorway where the scent will greet you
  • Beside a garden arch or pathway
  • As a hedge surrounding an outdoor living area
  • In a tub
  • As a standard topiary

Cooking with Cinnamon

Cinnamon is the dried bark of a tropical tree. Cinnamon powder is usually made from inferior product, and is simply this bark ground into a fine powder.

Cinnamon is mostly a culinary herb, used in baked goods, sweets, curries and drinks.

Try adding some cinnamon to your coffee or hot chocolate, or put a pinch into scones, damper or bread, next time you are baking.

How to Pickle Onions

Making pickled onions is really easy and nothing tastes better than the home-made version.

Ingredients

  • 2kg brown or white pickling onions
  • 250g salt
  • 2 red chillies
  • ½ cup sugar (optional)
  • 4 cups spiced vinegar

Method    Cut the ends of the onions, then peel. Stir the salt into 8 cups water until dissolved, then pur over the onions. Leave to soak for 24 hours. Drain and pack lightly into jars. Add chillies. Dissolve the sugar into the cold spiced vinegar and pour over the onions. Cover and store for several weeks before using.

Herbal Pest Control

Pyrethrum is a commercially grown herb. A chemical is extracted from the daisy type flowers, which is used as an insecticide. It has a good ‘knockdown’ effect on caterpillars, aphids, bugs, thrips, beetles and leaf hoppers and is not residual in the plant or soil. Most nurseries sell products containing this “natural” pesticide.

Carrots with Mint



If you love the flavour of mint? Then try this delicious recipe:

Ingredients

  • 6 – 8 tender young carrots or 2-3 cups of cooked carrots
  • 1 tsp butter
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 tbsp fresh mint, chopped

Method   Cook carrots and drain. In a frypan, melt butter, add honey and mint, then heat until bubbling. Add carrots, toss to glaze and heat thoroughly.

 

WHAT IS AROMATHERAPY?

Certain aromas can actually have specific effects on the body. Smelling salts can be used to revive someone after they faint; and putting your head over a basin of boiling water and Vicks can clear the nose when you have a bad head cold. Similarly; many herbal scents can affect the body in a variety of ways, including calming an over-active mind or stimulating dulled senses.

Aromatherapists are professionally trained to actually improve your health and wellbeing through the use of different scents. You can also learn about aromatherapy, to help yourself get over minor complaints by doing an aromatherapy course.

Check out our Aromatherapy Course

 

Is This What Should You Study?

This certificate is different to our Certificate in Herbs in that:
a/ It covers more general, broad based horticulture. You learn more about landscaping, propagation and growing plants beyond just herbs (and that keeps your options for work in the future a bit broader).

BUT

b/ In teaching you about things beyond herbs, there is less time to specialize in herbs; so the pure herb studies are reduced. The second half of this course now teaches you specifically about herbs; and with the underpinning knowledge you covered earlier, you will find that understanding and remembering this second part of the course will become easier, and your knowledge of herbs will strengthen beyond what may have been possible without first covering those underpinning topics.

In the grand scheme of things though; the difference between this certificate and the Certificate in Herbs is not huge. Your direction and level of success after you complete either course will depend more upon your motivation and enthusiasm and the experience you strive for after graduation.
Since 1999 ACS has been a recognised member of IARC (International Approval and Registration Centre). A non-profit quality management organisation servicing education.

Principal of ACS Distance Education, John Mason, is fellow of the CIH.

Member of Study Gold Coast Education Network.

ACS Global Partner - Affiliated with colleges in seven countries around the world.

Member Nursery and Garden Industry Association.


How can I start this course?

You can enrol at anytime and start the course when you are ready. Enrolments are accepted all year - students can commence study at any time. All study is self paced and ACS does not set assignment deadlines.

Please note that if a student is being assisted by someone else (e.g. an employer or government subsidy), the body offering the assistance may set deadlines. Students in such situations are advised to check with their sponsor prior to enrolling. The nominal duration of a course is approximately how long a course takes to complete. A course with a nominal duration of 100 hours is expected to take roughly 100 hours of study time to complete. However, this will vary from student to student. Short courses (eg. 100 hrs duration) should be completed within 12 months of enrolment. Certificates, Advanced Certificates and Awards (eg. over 500 hours duration) would normally be completed within 3 -5 years of enrolment. Additional fees may apply if a student requires an extended period to complete.
If a student cannot submit their assignments for 6 months to ACS, they should advise the school to avoid cancellation of their student
registration. Recommencement fees may apply.

Simply click on the ENROL OPTIONS button at the top of this screen and follow the prompts.

You can see the course price at the top of this page. Click 'enrolment options' to see any payment options available.

You can pay by Credit Card, PayPal, Afterpay or bank transfer.

Yes! We have payment plans for most courses. Click 'enrolment options' to see the available payment plans.
We also have Afterpay that will allow you to pay for your course or payment plans in four instalments (if you are in Australia).


What do I need to know before I enrol?

There are no entry requirements that you need to meet to enrol in our courses, our courses are for everyone.
If you are under 18, we need written permission from your parent/ guardian for your enrolment to continue, we can arrange that after you have enrolled.

You don’t need to purchase any additional resources to complete our courses.

We aim to teach you the essentials without you having to purchase any specific computer program.
We recommend that you have access to a word processing program, such as Microsoft Word or Google Docs, so that you can easily complete and submit your assignments.

You sure can. We are here to help you learn whatever your abilities.

Yes, if you are enrolling in a Certificate or Advanced Certificate, you might be eligible for credits if you have evidence of your previous studies or relevant experience. More information is here.

We recommend that you are able to browse websites, send emails and conduct online research. You will need to be able to type and submit your assignments.
If you have limited computer skills, we can make special arrangements for you.

This is possible, it depends on the institution. We recommend that if you would like to use our courses that you contact the institution first. Our Course Handbook is a good resource for this.

Our courses are written in English and we only have English speaking academic staff. If you can read and complete your assignments in English, our courses are ideal for you.

Our courses are designed to build knowledge, hands on skills and industry connections to help prepare you to work in the area, running your own business, professional development or as a base for further study.

This course is aimed at providing you with a solid understanding in your selected discipline. It has been designed to take 600 hours, which includes your course reading, assignment work, research, practical tasks, watching videos and more. When you complete the course, will have a good understanding of the area/ industry you want to work in.

It’s up to you. The study hours listed in the course are a rough guide, however if you were to study a short course (100 hours) at 10 hours per week, you could finish the course in 10 weeks (just an example). Our courses are self-paced, so you can work through the courses in your own time. We recommend that you wait for your tutor to mark and return your assignment before your start your next one, so you get the benefits of their feedback.

The course consists of course notes, videos, set tasks for your practical work, online quizzes, an assignment for each lesson (that you receive feedback from your tutor from) and ends in an exam (which is optional, if would like to receive the formal award at the end), using our custom built Learning Management System - Login.Training.

Our courses are designed for adults to gain professional development and skills to further their careers and start businesses.

Our custom online learning portal allows you to conduct your learning online. There may be practical tasks that you can do offline. You have the option of downloading your course notes or print them to read later.

There is also the option to pay an additional fee for printed course notes and or USB (availability limited to location and deliverability).

Yes, if you don’t have access to the internet, you can receive the course as paper notes or on a USB stick for an additional fee. We can also make alternative arrangements for you to send your assignments to us.

We offer printed notes for an additional fee. Also, you can request your course notes on a USB stick for an additional fee.

Yes, your tutor is here to help you. Simply post any questions you have in your login.training portal or contact the office and we can pass on a message to your tutor.

We are more learning focussed, rather than assessment focussed. You have online quizzes to test your learning, written assignments and can complete an exam at the end of the course (if you want to receive your certificate). You will not receive a pass/ fail on your course work. If you need to add more details on your assignment, we will ask you to resubmit and direct you where you need to focus. If you need help, you can ask your tutor for advice in the student room.

Each module (short course) is completed with one exam.

Exams are optional, however you must sit an exam if you would like to receive a formal award. You will need to find someone who can supervise that you are sitting the exams under exams conditions. There is an additional cost of $55 (AUS) $50 (O/S) for each exam.
More information is here

There are practical components built into the course that have been designed to be achieved by anyone, anywhere. If you are unable to complete a task for any reason, you can ask your tutor for an alternative.

When you complete the course work and the exams (6 exams) and you will be able receive your course certificate- a Certificate. Otherwise, you can receive a Letter of Completion.

You can bundle the short courses to create your own customised learning bundle, Certificates or Advanced Certificates. More information is on this page.

Yes, our courses are built to be applicable for people living anywhere in any situation. We provide the fundamentals, and each student can apply their own unique flair for their own interests, region and circumstances with the one-on-one guidance of a tutor. There is also a bit of student directed research involved.

Employers value candidates with industry skills, knowledge, practical skills and formal learning. Our courses arm you with all of these things to help prepare you for a job or start your own business. The longer you study the more you will learn.

ACS has an arrangement with OAMPS (formerly AMP) who can arrange Professional Indemnity from Australian and New Zealand graduates across all disciplines. Ph: 1800 222 012 or email acs@oamps.com.au.


Who are ACS Distance Education?

ACS Distance Education have been educating people for over 40 years.

We are established and safe- we have been in education for over 40 years.
We are focused on developing innovative courses that are relevant to you now and what you will need to know in the future.
We are focused on helping you learn and make the most of your experience.
You can enrol at any time, you can work on your course when it suits you and at your own pace.
We are connected to many industry bodies and our staff participate in continuous improvement and learning activities to ensure that we are ahead of what learning is needed for the future.

Our courses are not accredited by the Australian Government. However many of our courses are recognised and held in high regard by many industry bodies.

Our courses are written by our staff, who all have many years experience and have qualifications in their speciality area. We have lots of academic staff who write and update our courses regularly.


How do I enrol my staff/ sponsored students?

Yes, you can do a request for a bulk enrolment and request an invoice on our Invoice Request Form

We can prepare an invoice, quote or proforma invoice. Simply complete your details on our Invoice Request form

We can arrange bulk discounts for your course enrolment, please get in touch with us to discuss your needs.

Yes, we have many students who are in locked facilities, such as prisons or hospitals. We can cater by also offering paper notes at an additional cost.


What if I have any more questions or need more information?

We can assist you to find the right course for your needs. Get in touch with us via email (admin@acs.edu.au) call on +61 7 5562 1088 or complete our course advice form.


What if I change my mind?

Please get in touch with studentservices@acs.edu.au if you would like to be removed from our mail list.

If you would like ACS Distance Education to delete your information at any time (whether you are a customer or a prospective customer), please contact our privacy officer and we will process this ( admin@acs.edu.au ).




Course Contributors

The following academics were involved in the development and/or updating of this course.

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

Adriana Fraser

Freelance writer, businesswoman, educator and consultant for over 30 years. Adriana has written extensively for magazines including free living publications -Grass Roots and Home Grown; and has authored or co authored many books ranging from a biography

Yvonne Sharpe

RHS 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





Tutors

Meet some of the tutors that guide the students through this course.

Rosemary Davies

Originally from Melbourne, Rosemary trained in Horticultural Applied Science at Burnley, a campus of 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.

Alexander O'Brien

Alex was born and raised in Cork, in the Republic of Ireland. Having been trained in Architecture, Permaculture, Mechanical Engineering, Ceramics, Furniture Design/Construction, Sustainable building and Art,Craft and Design, his knowledge base is broad. Much of his professional work has been designing and making nature inspired spaces, creative reuse of materials, permaculture and natural ecology regeneration.

That being said, in his own words, "....my real passion is teaching. I adore sharing my knowledge and experience. Seeing students progress, and learning, that is my soul food."'

Need Help?

Take advantage of our personalised, expert course counselling service to ensure you're making the best course choices for your situation.


I agree for ACS Distance Education to contact me and store my information until I revoke my approval. For more info, view our privacy policy.