RHS Theory

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

Sorry, there is currently no availability for this course, for further information on when there will be availability for this course, please feel free to contact us.

Enrol for this course

IMPORTANT NOTE:  the RHS suite of level 2 and 3 qualifications is changing and from September 2021 centres will be delivering the new format qualifications.

Those students who have completed one part of the current Diploma by September 2021 will be able to complete it using the new Certificate in Horticultural Principles, the new Certificate in Horticultural Practice, or the existing Certificate in Garden Planning  which can be offered by Centres for another year.  

We intend to offer the current Garden Planning Certificate in September 2021; once we can confirm dates and venues, registration for the course will need to be completed via our website, along with a payment of a non-refundable deposit. From September 2021 the RHS will ask us to pay exam fees for courses at the start of term.

Level 2 qualifications from the RHS can be the first step in changing to a career in horticulture, and an accepted route into the horticultural profession for National Trust and many other employers.

The current RHS Garden Planning Certificate is an ideal course for adult beginners or keen gardeners who want to broaden their knowledge. It introduces you to the basics of garden planning and planting: how to survey a site, choose and grow plants suitable for different situations, grow fruit and vegetables in the garden and under cover.

 There is no equivalent Level 2 qualification for the RHS Garden Planning Certificate in the new courses.

Note: This course is also available as Distance Learning (Online and Correspondence options);  click  on the Course tabs below to find out more.

What will I study?

You will study four units, which make together make up this certificate: these are:

  • Garden features, plant selection and planning
  • Choice, establishment and maintenance of garden plants and lawns
  • Production of outdoor vegetables and fruit
  • Protected environments and their use in plant cultivation

What is covered?

Click here for the RHS Level 2 Syllabus which provides you with a complete overview of the course.

How is it delivered and assessed?

This qualification is classroom based; teaching consists of lectures, practical demonstrations and plant identification sessions, with outdoor discussions where relevant. Each unit is assessed by a short written examination set by the Royal Horticultural Society in February and June each year.

There is no compulsory course work, but you will be given the opportunity to try sample examination questions if you are going to take the examination.

What qualification will I get?

When you have passed exams in all the units, the Royal Horticultural Society will award a Royal Horticultural Society Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Garden Planning, Establishment and Maintenance

If you successfully complete the other theory Certificate, you will be awarded the RHS Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Horticulture; and when you successfully complete the RHS Level 2 Practical Certificate in Horticulture as well, the RHS will award you a Level 2 Diploma in the Principles and Practices of Horticulture.

What is the cost and venue(s)?

Tuition fees are £498.50, the RHS examination fees are £64.00, total payable £562.50 plus VAT @ 20% is £675.00. 

This can be paid in four instalments of £172.00, which includes an overall administration fee of £10.

Courses will take place at Ryton and Bampton Centres, you may enrol for whichever centre is most convenient. 

At the Ryton Centre it runs on Saturdays for 28 weeks, from 9.00 am to 12.30 pm

At the Bampton Centre on Mondays for 20 weeks (in blocks over an academic year), from 9.30-15.00pm.

You can download a timetable for the sessions here.

What is the enrolment process?

Complete the online enrolment form click here to enrol. 

Please note course places are limited; completing the form does not guarantee that a place is available on the course you have chosen, our administrator will contact you to confirm your place. Shortly before the course begins you will be sent joining instructions.

What else do I need to know?

Our candidates enjoy a high level of success in RHS examinations, with over 90% passing on the first attempt and approximately half of those, passing with commendation (that means they achieve 70% or more in the exam).

What can I do after completing this course?

You can go on to study the second theory Certificate, The RHS Level 2 Certificate in Plant Growth, Propagation and Development. Alternatively, you could undertake the RHS Level 2 Practical Certificate in Horticulture, which is assessed rather than examination-based qualification.

An RHS Level 2 qualification is well respected in the horticultural industry and can be the first step in changing to a career in horticulture. It is an accepted route into the horticultural profession for National Trust and many other employers.

After completing your studies at Level 2 you can progress on to an RHS Level 3 qualification.

We also offer you the opportunity to pursue an interest in a garden design with our Practical Garden Design Course. Click on the tab below for more information.