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Plant botany and sustainable horticulture in the modern world

(Supported by the Soil Association and Yeo Valley Organic Garden)

Bridgwater and Taunton College have launched an exciting new horticulture programme starting in September 2022 to address the important issues affecting horticulture in the modern world. It has been written to cater for gardeners both professional and amateur who want to learn about the importance of sustainability and organic practices. Chemical-free methods and specific organic practices will be paramount in every area of the programme.

Delivered one day a week over 19 weeks the programme will be based at the College’s Cannington Campus with some modules being delivered at Yeo Valley Organic Garden and elsewhere.  Guest speakers from the Soil Association and other organisations involved in the industry will combine with the expert teaching from the College.

Flexibility is built into the programme. Being divided into 7 standalone modules, those wishing only to study specific modules can choose to do so.

The units are:

  • Plant botany
  • The root zone and organic soil management
  • Methods of propagation
  • Managing plant health without chemicals
  • Organic principles and practice
  • Fruit and vegetable growing
  • Biosecurity, Contemporary attitudes to horticulture and community engagement

This new programme sits alongside the current online Permaculture programmes and other specialist courses that focus on the importance of horticulture to wellbeing. Together they form a commitment by Bridgwater and Taunton College to driving the agenda of sustainability and increasing awareness of the need to reduce carbon dioxide release and improve carbon sequestration as well as the importance of removing peat and the reduction and elimination of synthetic chemicals.

Nigel Cox, Horticulture Course Leader at Bridgwater and Taunton College, Cannington Campus, and creator of the new course commented.

 ‘As a college we are committed to driving the sustainable agenda and I am delighted that this course will enable us to reach those already committed to a more sustainable future in horticulture and those who wish to learn more about how they can help

Comments from Yeo Valley Organic Garden

Sarah Mead, Head Gardener at Yeo Valley Organic Garden

‘There has never been a more pertinent time for Bridgwater and Taunton college to be launching this ground-breaking (excuse the pun) course on Plant Botany and Sustainable Horticulture in the Modern World.  Not a day too soon in our humble opinion.  We are delighted to be a small part of it and very much look forward to welcoming the college students here to the Yeo Valley Organic Garden.’

Comment from Soil Association

Ben Raskin, Head of Horticulture and Agroforestry, Farming and Land Use Team, Soil Association

‘We’re delighted to be supporting Bridgwater and Taunton College as they lead the way in providing training to grow the next generation of food producers. Climate change, global trade insecurity and the drive for increasing food and vegetable consumption means we need the best new talent into Horticulture to equip us as nation to feed ourselves. With a strong focus on organic practices and chemical free methods of production, this course will help new entrants gain the skills and links to industry to support them on their horticultural career.’

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