RHS Theory

RHS Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Horticulture (new for 2021)

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

 After 2020-21 this new RHS Level 2 Certificate will replace the Level 2 Certificate in Plant Growth at our centres.

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

The new course introduces you to botanical names and the terminology of horticulture,  to the basic science behind plant growth which underlies how you can keep plants healthy, and gives you an outline of the relationship between plants and the soil and how nutrients are supplied. It also now covers planting styles, how to specify plants for sites, plants and biodiversity  and the role of horticulture in society.

Note: This course will be available as a Distance Learning and Distance Correspondence options; click  on the course tabs below to find out more.

What will I study?

You will study two units, which make together make up this certificate. These are:

  • Unit 1: Plant Science 1,Plant Health, Plant Nutrition and Plant Specification
  • Unit 2: Plant Science 2, Planting styles, Horticulture and Society and Biodiversity

What is covered?

As soon as the full syllabus is available we will make it available.

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 of the two units unit will be entirely assessed by a summative written examination; examination 1 will cover topics 1.1 - 1.4; examination 2 will cover 2.1-2.4. Examinations must be taken with a provider approved by RHS Qualifications, or under arrangements for exceptional supervision agreed with RHS Qualifications.

What qualification will I get?

When you have passed exams in both units, the Royal Horticultural Society will award a Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Horticulture.

If you successfully complete the RHS Level 2 Practical Certificate in Horticulture as well, the RHS will award you a Level 2 Certificate in the Principles and Practices of Horticulture.

If you have already begun your studies with the RHS Level 2 Certificate in Garden Planning, with either the new Practical Certificate or the current Practical Certificate you can still achieve the Level 2 Diploma in the Principles and Practices of Horticulture.

Note: it is not compulsory to take examinations if you are following the course for your own interest but the RHS now requires you to register and pay for examinations at the beginning of your studies. 

What is the cost and venue(s)?

Details of the exact content of the course and the assessment methods are not yet confirmed so this information will follow.

What else do I need to know?

Our candidates have in the past enjoyed 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 could undertake the RHS Level 2 Practical Certificate in Horticulture.

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 here to find out more.