By Mariza Halliday - Last update

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What is Gardening?

Gardening is all around us, it is the food that we eat and the landscapes around us.

Gardening is the growing of plants such as flowers, shrubs, and trees as a hobby or as a career. It is the business of maintaining the health of the soil, air and water, and the well-being of our natural resources so that we may grow plants successfully.

What courses are available?

Universities and colleges in Ireland are offering courses in the following subject areas:

  • Garden Design – the study of botany and soil science, propagation, and design theory and practice.
  • Gardening – the study of practical and theoretical gardening.
  • Gardening and Landscape Design – the study of horticulture, landscape design, garden maintenance, and plant propagation.
  • Weeds Identification and Control – the study of weed identification and how to control them for farmers, gardeners, and landscape managers.
  • Eco-Community Garden Training – the study of natural plants and trees and eco-friendly features for community gardens.
  • Food Gardening – the study of the plants and trees that produce food and how to set up and maintain a thriving food garden.

Studying Gardening in college

The study of Gardening involves an overview of the basics of a garden from how to make the soil a rich and healthy environment for plants to learning where and when to plant depending on what you are planting.

Gardening courses provide students with hands-on learning opportunities that allow them to increase their knowledge and skills while also increasing environmental awareness.

There are courses available for full-time or part-time learning so you can work at your own pace and in your schedule. You will gain a foundation in basic gardening skills through theoretical work in the form of learning modules and lectures, active participation, interactive quizzes, and project work.

Assessments take place continuously with written assignments and depending on your chosen course there may be the end of module tests, exams, or multiple choice question assessments.

Career options

Gardening is a career field with many options available, training in gardening and horticulture can lead to work in floral design, conservation, education, and even psychotherapy, using plants to soothe patients.

Gardening careers focus on growing, cultivating, pruning, and treating plants for aesthetic purposes or you may decide to go along a horticultural approach and learn about gardening for food, education, science, or even business. You could work in places like Public and Private Parks, Public and Private Gardens, Nurseries, Garden Centres, Greenhouses,

Other jobs that require a higher degree of responsibility will typically require further education, training, and/or experience to qualify for.

Related jobs include:

  • Gardener
  • Caretaker
  • Arborist
  • Floriculturist
  • Horticulturist
  • Hydrologist
  • Landscaper
  • Florist
  • Horticultural Therapist
  • Garden Designer
  • Greenkeeper
  • Flower Farmer
  • Ecologist
  • Environmental Engineer

Further study

A third-level degree is the first step to go on to further postgraduate study often involving specialization in particular fields and areas of Horticulture and Land Management or Ecology and Environmental studies.


What are the benefits of Gardening?

Gardening can reduce stress and mental clarity while also helping to build a strong and healthy body. Nature has long been known for its relaxing qualities, as a place for humans to find tranquillity and healing.

Being outside increases your exposure to Vitamin D and the weight-bearing exercise of gardening is good for bones and the heart. Indoor gardening relieves stress, boosts creativity, productivity, and focus, and promotes recovery. There’s some evidence that houseplants may positively influence the air quality in your home as well.

Are there any particular qualities you need to study Gardening?

A love of nature and working outdoors, often on your own are important qualities for anyone aspiring to a career in the garden. A willingness to get your hands dirty and work hard is also critical. You must have a passion for plants and their growth and an understanding that gardening is a work of time and patience, it takes time for things to grow and develop and nothing in gardening happens overnight so there is a lot of planning involved.

You should be determined, adaptable, enthusiastic, and prepared to work hard in a career that you’ve chosen because you love it.

Where can I study Gardening?

Explore your options here

Did You Know?

  • A sunflower is not just one flower, the brown center and the classic yellow petals are 1,000 – 2,000 individual flowers, held together on a single stalk.
  • Some fruits belong to the Rose family – apples, peaches, pears, cherries, raspberries, and strawberries are all Rosaceae.
  • Trees are the longest living organisms that exist on earth.
  • 90% of the food humans eat comes from 30 plant types.



Mariza Halliday

Farming Technology Courses
Landscape Design


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