The QQI Level 5 horticulture course in Galway Community College offers students the chance to acquire a vast knowledge of many different aspects in the amazing world of horticulture. Huge emphasis is placed on plant identification and students spend some time each week learning and identifying new plants. Another great way to learn plants is to work with them, and from September until the following May students maintain the great collection of plants in GCC.
Throughout the year the students sow and grow different vegetables, from the humble lettuce and winter mizuna to the ever popular potatoes, tomatoes, and chillies inside GCC's 20 metre tunnel and outdoors in a range of growing beds.
Students learn the basics of garden design in ornamental horticulture and put their knowledge into practice in the landscape construction and maintenance module when they participate in a group project, creating designs with a mix of hard and soft landscaping. Plant science and soil science are very important in the gardening world and students benefit hugely from these two modules.
Over the years GCC has built up a great network within the horticulture industry, especially in Co Galway. Students partake in a work practice module in places such as Woodville Walled Garden in Kilchreest, Loughrea, Dangan House Nursery in Galway, McGaugh’s Garden Complex on the Curraghline, Radharc Nursery in Moycullen, with organic growers An Garrai Glas in Inverin, Bia Oisin in Claregalway, and with Green Earth Organics in Corrandulla.
If you have an interest in gardening or want to find work in the industry, this course might just be the place to start. The course runs from September to May. Apply online at www.galwaycc.ie or follow @gccfurthered on social media.