Get your hands dirty and watch your career grow as a horticulture technician - 2022/2023
Fanshawe’s Horticulture Technician is for you if you are interested in a job that will take you outside and connect you with the earth that we live on and must protect.
As a student, you’ll learn how to build and maintain landscapes, gardens and indoor spaces. You’ll study arboriculture, landscape design, plant identification, plant production and business management. You’ll even participate in national events such as Skills Canada, Canada Blooms and Landscape Congress.
A horticulture education has to include a hands-on component, right? As part of the program you’ll have full access to the on-campus greenhouse designed exclusively for Horticultural students. You’ll also be able to work in the 100-acre ‘living lab’ that is the Fanshawe campus, including the A.M. Cuddy Garden near Strathroy. That means 80 per cent of the time you’ll be out of the classroom, getting your hands dirty. Not bad, eh?
When you graduate, you’ll find exciting job opportunities with design-build firms, nurseries and greenhouses, golf courses, garden centres, landscapers as well as parks and botanical gardens.
If you’re eager to break out of your four walls, then the Horticulture Technician program can push you forward.
Horticulture Technician program progression
Fall intake only
|Year 1||Level 1||Level 2||Work Term 1|
|Year 2||Level 3||Level 4||Work Term 2|
Admission Requirements - 2022/2023
Admission RequirementsOSSD with courses from the College (C), University (U), University/College (M), or Open (O) stream
Academic and Career Entrance Certificate (ACE)
Ontario High School Equivalency Certificate (GED)
Mature Applicant with appropriate preparation
English Language Requirements
Applicants whose first language is not English will be required to demonstrate proficiency in English by one of the following methods:
- A Grade 12 College Stream or University Stream English credit from an Ontario Secondary School, or equivalent, depending on the program's Admission Requirements
- Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) test with a minimum score of 79 for the Internet-based test (iBT), with test results within the last two years
- International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic test with an overall score of 6.0 with no score less than 5.5 in any of the four bands, with test results within the last two years. SDS Program Requirements.
- Canadian Academic English Language (CAEL) test with an overall score of 60 with no score less than 50 in any of the four bands, with test results within the last two years
- Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE) with a minimum score of 53, with test results within the last two years
- A Cambridge English Test (FCE/CAE/CPE) with an overall score on the Cambridge English Scale of 169 with no language skill less than 162, with test results within the last two years
- An English Language Evaluation (ELE) at Fanshawe College with a minimum score of 70% in all sections of the test, with test results within the last two years
- Fanshawe College ESL4/GAP5 students: Minimum grade of 80% in ESL4/GAP5 Level 8, 75% in ESL4/GAP5 Level 9, or 70% in ESL4/GAP5 Level 10
Recommended Academic Preparation
- Any Grade 11 or Grade 12 Geography (C), (U), or (M)
- Grade 11 Visual Arts (M) or (O) OR Grade 12 Visual Arts (M)
- Grade 11 or Grade 12 Construction Engineering Technology (C)
- Grade 11 or Grade 12 Biology (C) or (U)
- Grade 12 Business and Technological Communication (O)
- Grade 12 Foundations for College Mathematics (C)
- Computer Skills
- Any Horticulture courses
Important - Class 'G' Driver's Licence:
Students entering the 2nd year of the Horticulture Technician program must be in possession of an Ontario 'G' or 'G2' Driver�s Licence. If a student�s driver�s licence is suspended at any time during the program, the student is responsible for notifying the Program Coordinator immediately. Loss of a driver�s licence may result in delayed progression or inability to complete the program. Failure to notify the Program Coordinator of the suspended licence may result in dismissal from the program.
Recommended Personal Preparation
- Industry exposure
Applicant Selection CriteriaWhere the number of eligible applicants exceeds the available spaces in the program, the Applicant Selection Criteria will be:
- Preference for Permanent Residents of Ontario
- Receipt of Application by February 1st (After this date, Fanshawe College will consider applicants on a first-come, first-served basis until the program is full)
- Achievement in the Admission Requirements
- Important - Class 'G' Driver's Licence: Students entering the 2nd year of the Horticulture Technician program must be in possession of an Ontario 'G' or 'G2' Driver�s Licence. If a student�s driver�s licence is suspended at any time during the program, the student is responsible for notifying the Program Coordinator immediately. Loss of a driver�s licence may result in delayed progression or inability to complete the program. Failure to notify the Program Coordinator of the suspended licence may result in dismissal from the program.
|WRIT-1036||Reason & Writing 1-Art & Design||3|
|This course introduces students to essential principles of reading, writing, and reasoning at the postsecondary level. Students will identify, summarize, analyze, and evaluate multiple short readings and write persuasive response essays to develop their vocabulary, comprehension, grammar, and critical thinking.|
|LAND-1027||Landscape & Garden Design||4|
|This course is designed to provide the student, through a series of projects, the design principles and practical skills necessary to develop a landscape plan. The student will be introduced to the process of assessing a site to determine the various elements that will impact on the development of an effective landscape solution, as well as learn basic drafting and technical skills. Surveying techniques and measuring tools will be used to inventory existing site conditions.|
|MTNC-1031||Landscape Maintenance 1||3|
|Landscape and garden maintenance is a very profitable and often under utilized section of the landscape industry. This course offers an orientation to tools and equipment used in landscape maintenance and examines safety in the workplace of landscape/horticulture. Students will begin exploring practical, hands-on landscape maintenance principles to prepare for more specific training in future classes.|
|HORT-1072||Horticulture & Soils||3|
|A foundation course in horticulture in which the basics of plant anatomy, plant physiology, plant propagation, plant growth and production will be studied. In addition, students will develop an understanding of the proper management and sustainable conservation of soils and various media that constitute the root environment essential for the successful cultivation of plants.|
|Students will learn the history of botanical gardens and their importance in conserving and documenting diverse plant species. Students will learn specific record keeping techniques while they explore the Fanshawe College Botanical Gardens. Fanshawe College Botanical Gardens is a living library with an internationally recognized plant collection. The Botanical Gardens are home to over 4,000 plant species. Located at the Oxford St Campus in London and The Mac Cuddy Botanic Garden in Strathroy, Ontario, these unique gardens are part of Botanic Gardens Conservation International and maintain associations with botanic gardens across the globe.|
|HORT-1071||Woody Deciduous Plant Identification||3|
|This course will provide the student with an introduction to plant naming systems and taxonomy as an aid in plant identification. Through woody plant walks, plants will be viewed and studied on site, either in a cultured or natural environment. At the conclusion of the course the learner will be able to identify and give basic cultural information on over 150 hardy deciduous trees, shrubs and vines for a USDA Zone 5 landscape.|
|COOP-1020||Co-operative Education Employment Prep||1|
|This workshop will provide an overview of the Co-operative Education consultants and students' roles and responsibilities as well as the Co-operative Education Policy. It will provide students with employment preparatory skills specifically related to co-operative education work assignments and will prepare students for their work term.|
|COMM-3074||Communications for Design||3|
|This course, designed for students who plan to work in the field of art and design, focuses on professional written and verbal communication skills. Students learn to prepare a variety of work-related documents. In addition, students learn about research methods and documentation formats. The principles of effective writing - organization, grammar, style, clarity, and tone - are reinforced throughout the course. The goal of the course is to prepare students for the communication tasks and considerations they will encounter in the workplace in order to meet the needs of employers and/or the communities they will serve.|
|HORT-1053||Plant Health Care||2|
|This course will prepare the student to write the Ontario Provincial Ministry of Environment landscape pest exterminator licensing exam. Topics of study include basic information on common pests of the landscape in Ontario, general information on plant protectants, integrated pest management techniques, plant protectants and the environment, plant protectant application technology, current legislation governing pesticides, and human health and safety issues relating to plant protectants.|
|Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to identify and protect themselves from the safety hazards presented by powered landscaping equipment. Students will also have demonstrated the ability to set up, maintain, and perform minor repairs to outdoor power equipment used in the landscaping industry.|
|MATH-1159||Trade Calculations for Hort Tech||2|
|Numeracy skills are considered a skill in the horticulture/landscape industry. In this course students will learn to accurately perform calculations typically used in the horticulture/landscape industry with particular attention to the way these concepts apply to problems encountered by horticulture technicians in job situations.|
|Urban forests are an integral part of the everyday landscape. Arboriculture will focus on our interaction with trees in this environment. Topics discussed will include tree structure and function, site evaluation and planting and tree placement, species selection, transplanting and after care management. Topics will be demonstrated through in-class lectures, labs, site visits and project demonstrations.|
|CONS-1083||Landscape Construction 1||3|
|Through a series of lectures and hands-on workplace simulations the student will begin to learn the basics of construction principles in landscaping. This course introduces the student to the materials they will encounter when designing and constructing landscape projects. The learner will be able to identify, describe and understand how each material could be used in various landscape projects as they prepare for more specific training in future classes.|
|HORT-1073||Greenhouse Plant Production 1||3|
|In this course students will participate in the production and marketing of a greenhouse crop. Students will learn how to control the environmental conditions within the greenhouse using the PRIVA Computer Control System. Learners will apply plant production techniques, maintain the greenhouse facility, and perform sales and marketing activities in practical sessions including a weekend learning practical assignment.|
|HORT-1074||Woody Evergreen Plant Identification||3|
|This course will provide the student with an introduction to plant naming systems and taxonomy as an aid in plant identification. Through woody plant walks, plants will be viewed and studied on site, either in a cultured or natural environment. At the conclusion of the course the learner will be able to identify and give basic cultural information on over 100 hardy evergreen trees, shrubs and groundcovers for a USDA Zone 5/6 landscape.|
|ENVR-3005||Integrated Pest Management||2|
|At the conclusion of this course students will have a working knowledge of integrated pest management (IPM). Students will learn about pests and diseases and monitoring, implementation and evaluation of IPM programs in greenhouses and landscape settings. Current pest problems will be examined from an IPM perspective utilizing a series of student led panel presentations and discussions. Horticultural principles for ornamental maintenance dealing with pest management, plants and planting, and tree and shrub maintenance will be examined.|
|MTNC-3009||Landscape Maintenance 2||3|
|Through intensive practical hands-on sessions, students will be involved in actual landscape installations and maintenance of existing landscapes and gardens. The practicum will cover: site preparation for new landscapes, irrigation, perennial care, tree transplanting and planting of containerized nursery stock, bulbs, wrapping shrubs and general winterization of the landscape.|
|CONS-3051||Landscape Construction 2||3|
|Through a series of lectures and project-based learning students will be exposed to precast concrete, natural stone and wood products and their use in the landscape industry. Industry standards set out by The Interlocking Concrete Pavement Institute (ICPI), and The Canadian Nursery Landscape Association (CNLA) will be used as guidelines for proper installations.|
|HORT-3034||Greenhouse Plant Production 2||3|
|In this course students will build on the knowledge and experience attained in Greenhouse Plant Production 1. Learners will apply new/different plant production techniques, maintain the greenhouse facility, and perform sales and marketing activities in practical sessions including a weekend learning practical assignment.|
|HORT-3030||Herbaceous Plant Identification||3|
|Developing and maintaining complex and intricate plantings requires a comprehensive knowledge of the various herbaceous plants such as perennials, annuals and weeds and their association with the woody species in the landscape. Learners will explore herbaceous plant identification, taxonomic detail, culture and maintenance through lectures and plant walks.|
|COMP-1013||Dynascape for Garden Design||3|
|This course provides instruction in the fundamentals of AutoCAD with a focus on Landscape Design. Students will demonstrate their ability to prepare two-dimensional drawings as well as file management, drawing setup layers, line types, dimension styles, text and plotting. Students will be introduced to aspects of AutoCAD's three dimensional drawing.|
|Students will continue to learn arboriculture practices and focus on hands-on training. Through lectures, labs and practical field exercises students will gain experience utilizing the various pieces of specialized arboriculture equipment, and implementing tree maintenance techniques in the safest possible manner.|
|This course will explore the importance of turf and its culture in a horticulture/landscape environment. Topics will include turf use, establishment, and maintenance practices such as mowing, aerating, fertilizing, irrigation components and principles and pest control. The theory behind good turf quality will also be explored through discussion topics such as methods of preventing turf weeds, environmental factors on turf grass diseases, decisions affecting the selection of turf grass species and turf renovation versus re-planting.|
|HORT-3035||Trends in Sustainable Horticulture||3|
|Through a series of lectures and labs students will explore environmentally friendly methods of practicing gardening, including garden maintenance, plant propagation and carbon footprint. Learning will focus on sustainable horticulture, organic agriculture, community development, and sustainable resource management. Students are introduced to horticultural tasks with an approach that emphasizes caring for people, the environment and the existing landscape.|
|BUSI-1208||The Business of Landscaping||3|
|This course focuses on developing techniques of business management including financial management, document control, marketing, asset acquisition and management, people management, compliance and a professional approach.|
|HORT-3033||Annual & Tropical Plant Identification||3|
|Tropical houseplants, gift plants, bulbs and annual plants will be identified through growth habits, foliage, flower and fruit characteristics. Plant use and culture will also be explored as the crop production cycle progresses in the greenhouse.|
|MTNC-5009||Landscape Maintenance 3||3|
|This course will concentrate on the advanced levels of garden and landscape maintenance and site preparation. Topics will focus on site evaluation, development of a maintenance schedule and tender document, equipment needs and evaluation, spring garden maintenance and landscape preparation. This course will be delivered through a series of practical sessions and lectures with a portion of the practical evaluation done at Landscape Congress.|
|CONS-5037||Landscape Construction 3||3|
|Through a series of lectures and project-based learning students will be exposed to landscape features constructed with wood, concrete, and natural stone. To supplement the practical experiences the students will be involved in a major landscape display project at Landscape Ontario's Congress Trade Show held in January.|
|HORT-5008||Greenhouse Plant Production 3||3|
|In this course students will build on the knowledge and experience attained in our first two Greenhouse Plant Production courses. Learners will apply new/different plant production techniques with a focus on food based crops, sustainability and a focus on the business of operating a greenhouse facility. Students will continue to help maintain the greenhouse facility, and perform sales and marketing activities in practical sessions including a weekend learning practical assignment.|
Careers - 2022/2023
Career OpportunitiesGraduates are employed in all facets of horticulture including landscape and garden construction, landscape and garden maintenance, plant production in greenhouses and nurseries, golf course development and construction, arboriculture and garden centre and horticulture sales. Fanshawe College's Horticulture Technician program is held in high regard by the industry and as such demand for Fanshawe graduates is very high.
More Information - 2022/2023
A Two-Year Ontario College Diploma Program
Campus Code: LC (LC - London)
15 week terms
Academic Calendars available at www.fanshawec.ca/academicdates
ContactSchool of Design: 519-452-4227
Program DescriptionThe Horticulture Technician Diploma is a two-year co-op program with the emphasis on the practical aspects of horticulture. The program develops the academic and practical skill level in students that allow them to easily match a growing need in the green profession. All graduates can be fully employed in the field; there are, according to Landscape Ontario, the provincial trade organization, over 1600 positions available in horticulture in the province annually. Additionally, many opportunities exist out-of-province and even out-of-country.
The first year of the Horticulture Technician program is academic-centred while the emphasis in the second year is on hands-on practical training. Approximately 80% of the scheduled class time in the senior year is spent outside the classroom in courses such as Landscape Field Construction, Greenhouse Plant Production, Arboriculture and Garden and Landscape Maintenance.
Students and faculty participate in practical lab sessions while maintaining and redeveloping the grounds of the campus in real-time situations. The A.M. (Mac) Cuddy Gardens, in near-by Strathroy, greatly enhances the practical experience in a world-class estate garden which houses a remarkable collection of rare and endangered plants.
Students graduate with an Ontario College Diploma (Co-operative Education Endorsed) and while in the program students are given the opportunity to complete optional training in chainsaw use and the provincial pesticide license. Fanshawe College is the first institution in North America to integrate the CLT (Certified Landscape Technician) a national standard of proficiency into the program. Students will complete practical and written tests during their senior year and if successful will also be able to add the CLT designation to their names.
All students, upon registration, become members of the Student Chapter of Landscape Ontario, the largest student driven chapter in the province.
Students participate in a number of professional opportunities at various shows throughout the year. In past years Fanshawe has won many medals both provincially and nationally in the Landscape Gardening Skills Competition. Students participate regularly in Landscape Congress in Toronto, building the entrance garden in their final term. Senior students also volunteer in building gardens and assisting with the maintenance of gardens at Canada Blooms in Toronto. The Royal Botanical Gardens in Burlington has signed a memorandum of understanding with Fanshawe College and, as a result, student experience is greatly enhanced through this partnership which includes both summer internships and programmed events at the gardens.
The College has active industry partnerships in areas such as: lawn and garden equipment and suppliers, greenhouse service suppliers, landscape suppliers and services as well as professional associations such as the Landscape Ontario, Canadian Nursery Landscape Association, Botanic Gardens Conservation International, Royal Horticultural Society, Scottish Rock Garden Society, the North American Rock Garden Society, the Hardy Plant Society, the American Public Gardens Association and the Ontario Rock Garden Association.
Industry support and corporate sponsorship allows the program to use the latest technology, tools and equipment in the teaching labs; annually over $100,000.00 of support is received from industry.
The Gardens of Fanshawe College and the A.M. (Mac) Cuddy Gardens are recognized as a botanical garden by Botanic Gardens Conservation International and are home to over one million plants of some 4,000 species. Most of the collections are labeled and are propagated in our greenhouse at Fanshawe College and our nursery site in the A.M. (Mac) Cuddy Gardens in Strathroy. Ten students in the program maintain the gardens during summer under the supervision of our two staff horticulturists. Students will spend both class and independent practical periods at both locations. Our annual open garden and plant sale in June at the A.M. (Mac) Cuddy Gardens draws over one thousand visitors.
- The Horticulture Technician program operates in two major locations - the London Campus of Fanshawe College and the A.M. (Mac) Cuddy Gardens in Strathroy as well as occasionally at other sites in the London/Middlesex area. Students are expected to provide their own transportation to and from these locations as required.
- Many practical labs in the program occur outdoors in all weather and require lifting, bending, climbing and other physical work.
Co-operative EducationThis two-year program has two co-op work terms. Students who fulfill both the academic and co-op requirements of the program will be eligible to graduate with a Co-op Endorsed Diploma. More information about Co-operative Education can be found at www.fanshawec.ca/co-op.
The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to
1. apply the principles of plant* and soil sciences to complete work in horticulture*.
2. apply practical horticulture* skills to the production of plant materials*, including herbaceous plants*, woody plants*, and turf.
3. apply the principles of design* to horticulture*.
4. apply basic* installation and construction principles and practical skills to horticulture*.
5. implement maintenance procedures for plants, property, and equipment.
6. utilize knowledge of plant identification, usage, and maintenance criteria.
7. recognize the potential environmental effects of projects and the need to avoid environmental damage and promote healthier ecosystems.
8. apply the principles and practical skills of Integrated Pest Management (IPM)* to indoor and outdoor plants.
9. contribute to the effective planning, implementation, and conclusion of projects.
10. use safe working practices.
11. use business practices appropriate to the horticulture* industry.
12. act in a professional manner, maintain professional relationships, and communicate effectively with clients, co-workers, supervisors, and others.
13. develop strategies for ongoing personal and professional development to enhance work performance and career opportunities and to keep pace with industry changes.
Program PathwaysFor information about Program Pathways visit www.fanshawec.ca/programpathways.
Program DetailsMore details
2022/2023 academic year: Refer to the More Info tab to view offerings for the 2022/23 academic year. Canadian students can start applying in early October for programs with Sep. 2022, Jan. 2023 and May 2023 start dates through ontariocolleges.ca.