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Grounds Management (Horticulture)
Grounds Management (Horticulture) 400 Hours Advanced Certificate Course
Learn About Grounds Management (Horticulture)
Develop your skills and knowledge in the care and maintenance of parks, gardens and turf facilities. A 400 hour course that provides initial training for gardeners, groundsmen and others involved in the care and maintenance of parks, gardens and turf facilities. This course is similar to other horticulture certificates in its introductory (core) units, but devotes 50% of the course to topics specifically related to grounds maintenance.
Lesson Structure: Advanced Certificate In Horticulture (Grounds Management) VHT002. GM
Unit 1 – Pest, Diseases and Weed Control
Lesson 1 – Pest and Diseases
- Managing Pests and Disease Problems
- The Lifecycle of a Disease:
- Diagnosis of Problems
- Tell Tale Symptoms
- Fungal Biology
- Insect Biology
- The Life Cycle of an Insect
- Feeding Habits
- Molluscs, Nematodes and Crustaceans
- Insect Classification
- The Orders of Insects
- Common Garden Insects
- Set Reading – The Pest and Disease E book supplied with your course FREE OF CHARGE
- Keeping Records – Why Keep Records?
- Legal Requirements
- Your Spray Machine – Is it Good Enough?
- Mister/Duster Blowers Extra Information
- What Damage is being Done to the Environment?
- Protecting The Environment for the Future
- Definitions of Pesticide Terms
Lesson 2 – Weeds
- Steps in Controlling Weeds
- Some Common Groups of Weeds
- Weeds in Turf
- Some Turf Weedicides
- Law in Relation to Chemical Use
- Commonly Used Commercial Formulations
- Weeds in Nurseries
- Safety Procedures when Using Agricultural Chemicals
- Types of Herbicide Chemicals
Lesson 3 – Cultural Problems
- Plants and Water
- Air Pollution Injury to Plants
- Maintenance in Parks
- Comparitive Work Involved in Different Landscape Treatments
- Natural Gardening Techniques in Nature Parks
- Planting for Succession
- Plant Breeding for Resistance to Pests and Disease
- Parks – Analysis of Parks Maintenance
- Departmental Organisation and Staffing in Parks
- Equipment – A More Natural Approach
- Avoiding Problem Materials
- Disposing of Waste
- Spray Equipment
- Set Reading – Read relevant sections in the ebooks provided
- Pest/Disease Review Worksheet
Unit 2 – Turf Maintenance
Lesson 4 – Turf Grasses
- Grasses Physiology
- Turf Varieties
- Cultivar Selection Criteria
- Common Turf Species
- Lawn Mixes
- Identifying Grasses – Tips
- Description of Major Warm Season Lawn Grasses
- Establishing Turf Grasses
- Grasses Diagrams
- Turf Glossary
Lesson 5 – Turf Culture
- Turf Maintenance Techniques
- Fertilising Turf
- Weed Control
- Turf Health Problems
- Domestic Lawn Care Program
- Laying a New Lawn
- Set Reading
Lesson 6 – Types of Mowing Equipment
- Types of Mowing Equipment
- Mower Types
- Before Mowing
- Mowing Sports Turf
- Sports Turf Mowers
- Problems that may Occur With Mowing
- More on Mower Types
- Deciding What you Need
- Set Reading
Unit 3 – Tree and Shrub Maintenance
Lesson 7 – Arboriculture
- The Importance of Trees
- Choosing Trees
- How to Plant a Tree
- How to Transplant a Tree
- Tree Surgery
- Tree Surgery Safety
- Tree Surgery Techniques
- Tree Pruning
- Pruning Diagram
- Removing Trees
- Removing a Stump
- Tree Injection
- Set Reading
Lesson 8 – Tree Physiology
- Tree Health Disorders
- How and Why Frost Damage Occurs
- Dealing with Plant Problems
- Conducting an Inspection
- Diagnosis of Plant Disorders
- Environmental Problems
- Tree Growth
- Tree Physiology
- How a Tree Grows
- Compartmentalisation – How a Tree Rots
Lesson 9 – Plant Maintenance
- Planning and Managing a Garden
- Checklists for Gardening
- Basic Principles for Working in a Garden Situation
- Pruning Diagram
- Pruning Tools
- Environmental Influences on Plants
- Physical Plant Protection Methods
Unit 4 – Soils Management
Lesson 10 – Soil Degradation
- How Soils Develop
- Soil Degradation
- Soil Acidification
- Chemical Residues
- Set Reading
Lesson 11 – Soil Characteristics
- Soil Characteristics and Their Relationship to Plant Growth
- Cation Exchange Capacity
- Soils and How They Relate to Plant Growth
- The Nitrogen Cycle
- Nitrogen Fixation
- Carbon Cycle
- Carbon/Nitrogen Ratio
- Soil Tests
- Deciding When, What and How to Test
- Measuring pH
- Set Reading
Lesson 12 – Soil Management
- Improving Soils
- Composting Methods
- Cultivation Techniques and Their Effects on the Soil
- Set Reading
Unit 5 – Irrigation
Lesson 13 – Irrigation Equipment
- Irrigation Systems
- Irrigation System Design Considerations
- Types of Sprinkler Equipment
- Maintenance of Watering Systems
Lesson 14 – Understanding Water
- Plants and Water
- Understanding the Movement of Soil Water
- How to Improve the Quality of Water from Any Source
- Physical Impurities
- Chemical Impurities
- Biological Impurities
- Pumps and Pressure Systems
- Set Reading
Lesson 15 – Irrigation Design and Operation
- Estimating Water Requirements of Plants
- Trickle Irrigation in Ornamental Gardens
- Maintaining your Trickle Irrigation
- Putting Greens
Learning Goals: Advanced Certificate In Horticulture (Grounds Management) VHT002. GM
- Outline a logical and systemic approach to identifying pests and diseases, and appropriate management solutions for what has been identified
- Describe appropriate management responses to weed problems, based upon an examination and assessment of the problem and circumstances in which they occur
- Outline appropriate approaches to the culture of amenity plants
- Select appropriate turf species to provide the required performance appropriate to different situations
- Outline an appropriate approach to the culture of most turf cultivars plants encountered
- Outline the resources, human and equipment, that would be required to manage an area of sports turf
- Describe different and appropriate ways of managing a range of different tree species in the landscape
- Explain how trees grow, and how such knowledge can help you better manage trees in a landscape
- Describe how you would approach the task of planning and managing a garden
- Describe a range of management responses to soil degradation
- Describe the characteristics of different soils which affect the health of plants
- Outline soil management plans designed to improve soils, appropriate to different gardens
- Describe irrigation equipment that is appropriate to use in the maintenance of different landscapes
- Describe the movement of water through landscapes and soils, and use of water in maintenance of landscapes
- Describe the operation of irrigation systems in different landscape situations
Practical (Set Tasks)
Excerpt From The Course
HOW TO PLANT A TREE
Planting a tree might seem to be simply a matter of digging a hole and ‘bunging in’ a plant, but many
trees fail due to poor planting techniques. If you follow these guidelines, your tree will have its best
chance to grow to its full potential.
- Select a site where there is ample room for the tree to grow to its full size. Do not plant close to buildings, under power lines, or over gas and water pipes.
- Excavate the planting hole. The hole should be the same depth and approximately twice as wide as the container.
- Avoid creating smooth sides to the planting hole. Roots will be unable to penetrate into the surrounding soil.
- Remove the plant from its pot. Uncurl any circling roots, and if necessary, give the roots a light prune.
- Plant the tree so that the soil level matches the level of the surrounding soil.
- Backfill the hole with the excavated soil. If the soil is particularly poor, mix in an organic fertiliser before back-filling.
- Gently firm the soil around the plant. Do not heavily press the soil down with your feet. This – will compact the soil, preventing roots from penetrating.
- Water in thoroughly.
Planting Bare-Rooted Trees
The procedure for planting bare-rooted trees is much the same as for other trees, except for the
- Plant when the tree is dormant (mid-winter).
- Keep the roots of the tree wrapped up and moist until you are ready to plant.
- Dig a hole that is reasonably deep and wider than the root system.
- Mound some soil in the middle of the hole.
- Place the trunk of the plant on the centre of the mound and spread roots away from the trunk.
- Backfill and water in as above.
Planting Advanced Trees
- Advanced trees provide an instant effect, but they can be difficult to handle:
- When moving advanced trees be careful not to strain your back.
- Use machinery, or plenty of people.
- Use wheelbarrows, crowbars and trolleys, and take it slow.
- Once the tree is near or inside the hole, use a crowbar to manoeuvre it into position. In some cases,
- it is easier to break or cut the container than try to lift it out of the pot.
Helping the TreeSettle In
Once you have planted your tree, there are a number of things you can do to help it recover from the
shock of transplanting.
- Use an anti-stress spray (a spray that puts a coating over the leaf to stop water loss).
- Use a root hormones (chemical or natural e.g. seaweed).
- Water regularly – never let the soil dry out during the first six weeks after planting.
- Apply a fertiliser – regular applications of foliar fertiliser will get evergreens off to a great start.
- Remove damaged stems or roots.
- Install a tree guard to protect the tree from wind, animals and people.
- Only use stakes if the tree is in a very exposed, windy position, and never leave the stake in position for more than one season.
Assessment is based on a combination of completing all assignments and sitting for a final short one and a half hour exam, in your own location.
If you don’t cope well with exams then you may elect to undertake a project instead. This is a popular option.
In addition, most modules have a Set Task at the end of each lesson placed before the assignment. This is an opportunity to undertake practical work to help you acquire knowledge and skills and practical experience. This ADL feature is an added bonus not found at most online schools. Set Tasks are not required for assessment.
Some courses also have optional Self-Tests which are available on our online learning platform. These are not available by correspondence or by USB, and do not form part of your overall grade.
How our courses work
- Choose Your Learning Method
You choose how you would like to receive your course material, i.e., Online, USB or Correspondence. The choice is yours. You may also work on online or offline.
- Tutor Allocation
Every student is assigned their own dedicated tutor who is an expert in their subject area. They provide as much or as little individual contact as you require. You can contact your tutor whenever you need – your hours are not limited.
- Feedback and Assignments
Tutor Feedback is an essential component in helping you understand the subject matter. Tutor feedback is given in the form of notes written on the assignment. We encourage you to contact your Tutor where help with clarification and understanding of course material may be required.
Your assignments are located at the end of each lesson. You submit them for marking whenever you are ready. There is no time limit.
- Set Tasks and Self-Tests
Most modules have a Set Task at the end of each lesson before for the assignment. This is where you get the opportunity to undertake practical work to help you acquire knowledge, skills and practical experience. Many modules also have short Self-Tests.
Once all assignments have been completed you may then elect to sit for a one and half hour exam in your own location. If you prefer not to take the exam you do have the option to undertake a project instead.
Once the exam or project part of the course is completed, your Certificate is then processed. Please allow approximately 4 weeks for this.
- Design Your Own Qualification
ADL offers students the flexibility to self-design their own qualification – bundling together a combination of 100-hour modules into a qualification higher than a certificate.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Due to our years of experience and wide range of online courses, here are a list of our FAQs and Answers asked by Students.
Q. Do I need to buy text books?
A. No, you are not required to purchase expensive text books for any of our courses, since each module has been written by highly qualified tutors and writers, and our courses are updated on a regular basis, adding new information, methods and knowledge. You are supplied with all “essential” references. Extra books are always useful though, especially for special projects. Tutors will advise you what to buy if you decide you would like to have extra reading material, but it is not essential. Check out our eBookstore if you’re looking for a starting point.
Q. What sets the Academy apart from other institutions?
A. A unique feature of our courses is that we combine knowledge of the subject matter with practical tasks (set tasks, found at the end of each lesson). So you get to do practical components in each lesson. The benefits of this approach are immense: – your skills and knowledge are developed to a much higher level not normally found at other distance learning institutions.
Q. How do the practical exercises (set tasks) work?
A. The practical component of each lesson can be in the form of : Field Research, Networking and Analysis, Conducting Surveys, Growing, Collecting, Photographing and Processes.
Q. Can I pay by instalments?
A. Yes, you can view all available payment options here.
Q. Are there any hidden costs?
A. There are no hidden extras – the tuition fee covers all course material, unlimited tutor support, assignment marking/feedback and any text books where specified and exams. The only extras are for the public examinations fees for the ICB Bookkeeping course and the RHS (Royal Horticulture Society) exams.
Q. Are your courses up-to date?
A. Our courses are continually updated. The course content is rapidly updated and improved without the red tape and bureaucracy experienced at other educational institutions.
Q. Do you have a Cancellation policy?
A. We have a cancellation policy that is fair and equitable. For further details please click here.
Q. What Recognition do you have?
A. The Academy for Distance Learning has various forms of recognition:
These include TQUK (Training Qualifications UK) – an Ofqual Awarding Organisation – ADL is an approved TQUK Centre.
IARC – International Approval Registration Centre, approved member. Accredited Training Provider for ICB (Institute of Certified Bookkeepers) and Approved Distance Learning Provider for the RHS (Royal Horticultural Society) and many more. Our graduates come from many parts of the world and have used our qualifications for successful employment and progression onto higher education. To view our full list of recognition and memberships please click here,
Q. Will I have any opportunity to engage with other students?
A. We have a Student Community group based on facebook! If you don’t have a facebook account already, you could make one just for talking with fellow students on the group.
Q. Why should I enrol with the Academy for Distance Learning?
A. Here at the Academy our students are our priority – we treat every student as a unique individual. This philosophy allows us to nurture those who are “slow and steady” learners rather than letting them fall through the cracks, while catering for those who are in a hurry to complete.
Q. Can I study from anywhere in the world?
A. Our courses are available to anyone, anywhere in the world from the comfort of your own home. The course content is relevant to any country, culture or economy.
Q. Completing the course- how long will it take?
A. Completion of modules varies from student to student. Many factors come into play such as work commitments and family life- there are always distractions. Some students work quicker than others. For a 100 hour module many students will take up to 3- 6 months, others take less time and some are even longer. It’s all up to you. There is no pressure to complete or deadline to finish. Naturally, longer courses will take more time.
Q. What learning formats are there?
A. Your enrollment comes with the Online Classroom study option by default. For a small additional cost you also have the options of USB or Correspondence.
USB: Your course is sent to you on a USB stick, so that you can carry it in your pocket. Ideal for those with unreliable internet connections. This option is an additional £5/module
Correspondence: You download the course content and then print your own copy to your requirements. You can then bind the lessons to suit your needs.
Q. Assessment – how does it work?
A. For each 100 hour module you are assessed by assignments (at the end of each lesson) and a final one and a half hour exam (or you may elect to complete a project instead of sitting the exam) – the choice is yours – you sit for the exam in your own location, or you can visit us in Canterbury, England to sit the exam if want to. Exam fees are included in the tuition fee you paid. You can read more about the examination process here. At the end of each lesson, there is an assignment. You submit it to the academy who then submits it to the tutor for marking, comments and feedback. Our policy is to have a grade for you within 5 to 7 days.
Q. How many assignments do I need to complete for each module?
A. At the end of each lesson, there is an assignment – so if a course has say, 10 lessons there would be 10 assignments. The number of lessons per module varies from module to module. See the course content from our website for further details.
Q. When do I have to hand in my first assignment?
A. There is no deadline for handing in the first assignment. Submit when you are ready. There are some students who hand in assignments within the first couple of weeks of enrolment – while there are others who submit their work 6 months later. It’s all at your own convenience to suit you. Everyone has different work and home commitments and we cater to these needs.
Q. I am having difficulty attending workshops/industry meetings, what can be done?
A. If your course requires attendance at workshops, conferences, or industry meetings; alternative arrangements can be made in your country; however, there may be an additional expense. We can appoint an appropriately qualified person anywhere to work through curriculum documentation supplied by us, to satisfy the requirements set down in a course.
Q. What qualification will I receive?
A. For individual modules, you would receive a Certificate (providing you complete all assignments and the exam). If you just want to complete the assignments only, then a Letter of Achievement would be awarded. For more details on qualifications awarded please click here.
Q. Is there a next level to progress to?
A. Yes – you can progress from one module to a combination of many modules and to higher qualifications i.e. Advanced Certificates, Diplomas and Higher Advanced Diplomas. Read more about course levels here.
Q. Can I customize my diploma/higher qualification?
A. Not all educational institution’s certificates /diplomas meet everyone’s needs. The opportunity to design your own diploma at the Academy (subject to our approval) is an added bonus, not found at other colleges. It’s a very popular option and widely used by many students. You quite simply choose the appropriate number of related modules needed to complete the qualification and submit them to us for approval as a custom diploma.
Q. What do I get when I complete the course? Will I receive a transcript?
A. At the completion of a 100-hour Certificate course and providing all assignments and exam have been completed, you will receive a Certificate and Transcript. The Transcript will list your GPA. Each 100-hour module is worth 3 credit hours.
Q. Do I have to sit for an exam?
A. Exams are optional but need to be undertaken in order to receive the Certificate or higher qualification. Exams are one and a half hours long. You appoint an adjudicator (subject to our approval) to supervise the exam. You sit for the exam in your own location. Its that simple.
Q. I don’t cope well with exams – what can I do?
A. If you feel you don’t cope well with exams you may elect to undertake a Project (set by the tutor) instead of sitting the exam. Many students prefer this option as they find researching the material for the project sharpens their research skills.
Q. If I don’t sit for the Exam do I still get a qualification?
A. If you don’t sit for the exam but complete the project alternative, you will still receive your endorsed qualification. If you don’t sit for an exam or complete a final project, providing you have completed all the assignments you will be awarded a Certificate of Achievement.
Q. Do I have to sit for the exam at the Academy?
A. No – whilst you are more than welcome to come to our location in Canterbury, U.K. and sit the exam in our classroom; the more popular option is to sit for the exam in your own location. You appoint an adjudicator to supervise the exam. Click here for more information on that process.
Q. Our tutors – who are they?
A. We only employ tutors who have are currently active in their industry with at least 5 years of real-world experience. Not only are they highly qualified but also experienced, knowledgeable, and professional- experts in their chosen fields from all parts of the world.
Q. Can I contact my tutor at any time?
A. Yes- you have unlimited access to tutors. We strongly encourage students to develop a dialogue with their Tutor. This is why we encourage students to submit their first assignment fairly quickly at the beginning of the course.
Every Academy student is assigned a tutor who supports you throughout your course and beyond. Your tutor is there to guide and facilitate your learning and provides as much or as little individual contact as you would like. When you submit your coursework the tutor will give you feedback that helps you develop your ideas and provides motivation. For those who do like to have interaction with other students, the ADL discussion forum connects you to students from all over the world.
Q. How do I contact my tutor?
A. You have direct contact with your tutor by email through the Online Classroom. Alternatively, you can write, fax, email, or phone the academy. Leave a message if your tutor isn’t available and they will phone, write or fax back; whatever suits you.
Q. If I don’t understand a question or a lesson may I contact the tutor?
A. You may contact a tutor as often as you like. There is no additional charge or restriction on this service. Contact can be made via the Student Zone, email, or by phone.
Q. Practical work – How is this done?
A. To find out more about this part of the course please visit the section on How Our Courses Work here.
What your tuition fees include
- All Course Material via Online, USB or Correspondence
- Assignments Marked
- Professional Tutor Feedback
- Set Tasks - Practical Exercises to help you develop skills
- Self-Tests – multiple choice questions at the end of lessons in most modules
- Unlimited Personal Tutor Support – via our student classroom
- Committed and Friendly Admin Support – vital to your success
- ADL Ebook where relevant
- All ADL Exam or Project fees (exception RHS exams)
- Qualification Certificate
- Official Transcript with assignment grades
- Student Manual
- Academic Writing course (optional - 10 hours only)
- Critical Thinking course (optional - 10 hours only)
- Job Seekers Careers Guide
- Study Tips on How To Study Better
- Career Counselling by ADL Staff
- CV Writing Help, Tips and Advice
There are no hidden extras
FAQ - RHS Theory Qualifications
If you require further details about any of the RHS industry recognised qualifications please, call one of our friendly RHS Course Advisors on +44 (0)1227 789 649 or email: email@example.com
Q: When can I Enrol/Start My RHS Course With ADL?
A: Anytime, Anywhere. There are no enrolment deadlines.
Q: I live Overseas. Can I Study From Overseas?
A: You can study any of the RHS theory qualifications overseas. All courses are offered in English. You will need to email RHS Qualifications direct to arrange sitting for your examination overseas.
Q: Is There a Time Limit for Completing an RHS Qualification?
A: At present there are no time limits. However, RHS is contemplating in the future, the introduction of course time-lines.
Q: Are There Any Entry Requirements (Pre-Requisites)?
A: The RHS Theory courses do not require prerequisites, previous experience or any knowledge of horticulture. You just need passion for all things horticulture.
Q: What Course Should I Start With First? I Am New To RHS Qualifications.
A: We highly recommend that you start with Level 2 – Principles of Garden Planning, Establishment and Maintenance.
Q: What Does ADL Course Material Include?
A: Includes Power Point Presentations, Videos and written course lessons.
Q: When Do Exams Take Place?
A: Exams are held on fixed dates in February and June of each year. You should register as a candidate at least 3 months before these dates, so please do not leave exam registration to the last minute
Q: Where Do I Take My Exams?
A: UK: You take the exams at the RHS Wisley Centre, located between Cobham and Ripley in Surrey or at other authorised RHS centres around the UK.
Overseas: please email RHS qualifications direct for centre information.
Q: Exam Pass Marks?
A: Module – pass 50%. Commendation 70%.
Qualification: 50% pass for all modules.
Commendation awarded for all modules.
Each question carries a value of 10 marks.
Q: I’m Not Happy With My Exam Results?
A: You have the opportunity to re-sit your exam at the next opportunity.
There are no restrictions on the number of re-sits you can take. The highest mark you achieve will remain.,