RHS Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Horticulture

The Cheadle College

The Royal Horticultural Society has two theory-based qualifications at Level 2. These industry standard qualifications offer you the opportunity to study to improve your knowledge for your hobby or your career.


RHS Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Garden Planning, Establishment and Maintenance

This qualification consists of four units:

  • Understanding garden features, plant selection and planning
  • Understanding the choice, establishment and maintenance of garden plants and lawns
  • Understanding the production of outdoor vegetables and fruit
  • Understanding protected environments and their use in plant cultivation

RHS Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Plant Growth, Propagation and Development

This qualification consists of four units:

  • Plant classification, structure and function
  • Plant nutrition and the root environment
  • Maintaining plant health
  • Understanding plant propagation

Why choose it? This certificate is part of a suite of RHS qualifications which also includes the Level 2 Certificate in Practical Horticulture. Anyone who is successful in all three certificates will be awarded the Level 2 Diploma in the Principles and Practices of Horticulture.

Learners can study one or both of the theory certificates, depending on their interests. Each qualification takes one year of part-time study to complete. Both theory and practical courses will help you understand plants and learn more about the science of gardening. As this is an industry-wide recognised qualification it is not only for those wanting to improve their horticultural knowledge, but also for those who want to enter or progress within the horticultural industry.

What skills do I need? You will need an enthusiasm for plants and an interest in how they work as well a reasonable level of literacy skills.

How will I learn? The course is mainly classroom based with a few practical sessions throughout the year. There may also be the chance to visit various horticultural venues.

Who takes it? People of all ages who have a passion for plants and gardening; anyone looking for ideas for their new or existing garden; anybody wanting to make the most of their allotment or someone who is already working in gardening or the horticultural industry and would like a formal qualification. It could also interest those looking for a career change or those who have retired and want to start a new hobby.

Any other useful information? A wide selection of reference material is available for use in the classroom and many books are available to borrow from the college library. Most of your work is in the classroom, however all required tools are available for practical sessions, but learners may find it useful to have their own gloves and secateurs. Safety shoes or boots must be provided and worn by learners for all practical sessions.

This course is part funded and leads to a qualification. If you are entitled to fee remission you will not pay any fees and you may be able to obtain financial support from the Learner Support Fund towards costs such as travel, equipment, stationery etc. Please ask at enrolment if you would like further information. If you are aged from 19 to 23 and have never achieved a full level 2 qualification you may be entitled to free tuition on this course. Please ask Admissions staff for details.