Course Overview

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

Course code: OSC1337

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Understand the principles of garden planning establishment and maintenance, from home!

Whether you're a keen amateur gardener, thinking of a career change, or want to go further with your gardening business, you can now gain the knowledge of gardening and horticulture you need for success.

 On the course you will gain sound horticultural knowledge in the following areas:

  • Principles of garden planning and garden plant selection
  • Establishment and maintenance of garden plants and lawns
  • Cultural operations and production methods for outdoor vegetable and fruit crops
  • Protected environments (greenhouses, polythene tunnels and cold frames) and their use in plant cultivation

The course will allow you to study when and where you want, at your own pace. All coursework can be submitted by either post or email making it easier and hassle-free.

All of the materials will be delivered to you by post or online, so it couldn’t be easier. Our experienced and friendly tutors are always a click away by email, giving you advice and helping you through your course.

Develop your interest and knowledge by enrolling now and join the 85,000 students that have already done so.

Discounts on selected courses - Until 18th September
Course Content
Unit 1: Understanding Garden Features, Plant Selection and Planning (R2111)
  • Recording and carrying our garden surveys
  • Carrying out site appraisals and recording data
  • Principles of garden planning and what contributes to a good design
  • Characteristics of garden design styles
  • Hard landscaping materials and their effective uses
  • Soft landscaping materials and their effective uses
  • Key elements and incorporating them into a design
  • Safe and environmentally sensitive/sustainable development of garden sites and its importance


Unit 2: Understanding the Choice, Establishment and Maintenance of Garden Plants and Lawns (R2112)
  • Choosing, establishing and maintenance of plants for seasonal display
  • Choosing and growing herbaceous perennial plants and ‘bulbs’ for display
  • Choosing, establishing and maintaining woody plants for display
  • Choosing and growing alpine and rock garden plants
  • Planting and maintenance of a garden pool
  • The establishment and maintenance of lawns


Unit 3: Understanding the Production of Outdoor Vegetables and Fruit (R2113)
  • Selecting sites for outdoor food production in a garden or allotment
  • Cultural operations used in producing outdoor food crops
  • Vegetable crop production and its principles
  • Top and soft fruit production in a garden or allotment


Unit 4: Understanding Protected Environments and their use in Plant Cultivation (R2114)
  • Protected structure in growing plants and their uses
  • Environments provided by protected structures
  • Structural and cladding materials used for protected structures
  • Environmental control in protected structures
  • Container and growing media types uses for production and display in protected environments
  • The protected environment and its horticultural uses
  • Care of plants in interior situations
Other Information


This course is assessed through a series of examinations.

In order to achieve the RHS Certification, you will need to sit an examination for each module within the course. These exams will need to be sat at an alternative RHS Examination centre. A list of approved exam centres can be found here:

Examinations are offered twice a year and take place in February and June

For this course, you will need to sit 4 exams. There is a fee for each exam, which you will need to pay.

Course Duration

The total Guided Learning hours for this qualification is 97; the total Qualification time is 156.

You will have 1 year to complete this course. This is more than enough time to complete your studies, so you will be able to study in your own time and at your own pace.

Study Method

This course is designed for distance learning at home or at work. Students will receive a course pack containing all study materials, as well as full tutor support by email.

Course Outcome

On successful completion of this course and exams, you will receive an RHS Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Garden Planning, Establishment and Maintenance. The qualification is recognised by the Chartered Institute of Horticulture.

RHS stands for the Royal Horticultural Society and is the UK’s leading gardening charity.


Your Questions Answered

What skills are needed to enrol onto this course?

You do not need any previous knowledge to enrol onto this course.

What is included in the cost of my course?
  • Comprehensive study notes
  • Dedicated personal tutor support
  • Dedicated student support
  • Assignment marking and feedback
  • Ballpoint pen and highlighter*
  • Student study planner*
  • Student notebook*
  • Document wallet*
  • FREE TOTUM Card (formerly NUS)
  • FREE CV writing service upon successful completion of the course
  • FREE employability guide to help you impress future employers

* Only available with the study pack option

Do I need to sit an exam?

Examinations are offered twice a year and take place in February and June.

For this course, you will need to sit 4 exams. There is a fee for each exam, which you will be responsible for paying. View a list of exam centres here.

Are there any additional costs?

Everything you need to study will be provided; however, you will need to pay additional fees to sit your necessary examinations.

How do I get my work assessed?

Once we receive your work we will mark it and return it to you. On successful completion of the course and exams you will be awarded your RHS Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Garden Planning, Establishment and Maintenance.

What happens if I lose my course pack?

It’s not a problem. We offer a course replacement service, so if you get into trouble and your course pack is lost or damaged, our Student Support Team can provide you with a new set of materials for a one-time additional fee.

What if I still have questions?

That’s not a problem. We want to make sure you’re 100% confident about enrolling on the course and starting your study. So, just give our Student Support Team a call on 03300 563 100 and they’ll do their best to help.

Finance options

Provided by
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Monthly payment:

Deposit to pay:

  • Cash Price:
  • Loan Amount:
  • Loan Repayments:
  • Cost of Loan:
  • Number of Monthly Payments:
  • Total Amount Payable:

The total course fee includes a loan arrangement fee. Your initial deposit payment will be used towards this fee, any remaining fee balance will be added the loan amount.

Provided by

Our finance option is provided in partnership with AffordItNow.
For your finance application to be considered you must meet the following criteria:

  • Be over 18 years old
  • Be employed for at least 16 hours a week or retired and in receipt of a private or company pension. Certain state benefit schemes may also be considered.
  • Be a permanent UK resident with a 3 year address history
  • Have a good credit history with no late payments, debt relief orders or bankruptcies
  • Have a valid email address and can access it

Please note that meeting the above criteria does not guarantee finance acceptance.

Open Study College, 6140 Knights Court, Birmingham Business Park, Birmingham B37 7WY is a licensed credit broker, authorised and regulated by The Financial Conduct Authority (licence number 724179 with FCA).