planting design

Plants are the basis of most, if not all, garden design. It will usually be secondary in the technical design process, but is the principle object of desire for most clients. Many would argue that a garden without planting is not a garden at all.

We at the Garden Design Academy pride ourselves as plantsmen and are delighted to pass on our enthusiasm and knowledge to both amateur and professionals in the garden design, landscaping and parks sectors.

Working with Colin Elliott, an experienced professional garden designer and plantsman to help you every step of the way, you will be guided through the subject in a practical and immediately usable manner.

Plantsmanship has never been taught well by conventional horticultural education establishments and has even been removed as a compulsory subject by City & Guilds from both Production Horticulture and Parks, Gardens and Greenspaces level two diplomas. We aim to correct this by offering an easily digested crash course in Planting Design.

Planting design can be thought of in terms of function, form, history, ecology or aesthetics. The Garden Design Academy Planting Design course seeks to broaden the designers’ horticultural knowledge by promoting greater awareness of issues related to plants and planting design, including horticultural as well as ecological concerns.

This specialized area of garden design practice includes planting design theory, growth requirements of plants, plant nomenclature, plant selection and procurement, nursery production, and ecologically sustainable plant use.

In addition to broadening knowledge about plants and planting design among young designers in particular, an important goal of the Planting design course is to increase understanding and collaboration between designers and horticulturists, nursery professionals and environmentalists.

We will discuss and explain the tools and techniques available to garden designers in a series of modules throughout the week including:

  • Plant selection and establishment
  • Woody plants
  • Windbreaks, hedges and screens
  • Alpine and water plants
  • Annual and herbaceous plants
  • Turf
  • Pest, disease and weed control
  • Pruning and Maintenance
  • Environmental issues
  • Planting plans
  • Suppliers

To break up the week a number of garden visits are planned, the International Garden Festival at Chaumont being the most popular with designers. This is included in your fees.

By the end of a productive and informative week you will have a much clearer understanding of plant use and how this can be adapted to suit your own business. You will also have seen some of the sights of the region, eaten well and perhaps picked up a few words of French.

Course cost: £2,500 (deposit required) (balance paid three weeks in advance)

Course Dates & deposit payment

Accommodation cost: £650 (paid on arrival)

Arrival: Tuesday pm       Leave: Tuesday am

2016 Dates:   May, June, July, August, September, October

(other course dates available by request - maximum two students


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