QQI Level 5 – Horticulture Code 5M2586
1 year Full-time


The Level 5 Horticulture courses are highly recommended for those interested in hands-on, realistic experience in all aspects of gardening. The chore modules prepare learners to work as craft gardeners, with emphasis in sustainable and organic methods that are  friendly with the environment. 60% of the course involves working in charity gardens nearby, established private and public parks as well as college garden space. All with the guidance of the tutors. All the skills are demonstrated in the form of workshops and learners develop great confidence by the end of the academic year. Work placement involves 440 hours in total and our partners are well established organisations that many times offer a job position to students at the end.

The Gardening and Landscape Design course focuses on designing and constructing gardens with  professional landscapers and garden designers. One garden is designed and built from beginning to end during the academic year preparing students to work as assistants to landscape designers

Entry Requirements

Leaving Certificate or equivalent advised, but mature students with work/life experience are welcome to apply.


Programme of Study

Elective Modules

  • Landscape Construction & Maintenance
  • Garden Design
  • Plant Identification and Use
  • Ornamental Horticulture

Core Modules

  • Communications
  • Work Practice
  • Plant Science
  • Soil Science and Growing Media
  • Plant Protection
Modules offered may be subject to change due to resource demands.

Work Placement/Gardening Projects

Practical experience is an integral part of the course, including a 440-hour placement. Work placement takes place on a weekly basis plus a full month working in the industry in spring. The College has established the following practices to enhance learners’ exposure to horticulture:

  • Garden maintenance in public parks, private gardens, and college grounds
  • Community support: designing and helping to build a garden for St. Michael’s House
  • Maintaining the gardens of Simpson’s Nursing Home and helping with the Airfield

Career Opportunities

Graduates have a wide variety of employment opportunities in domestic landscaping, private gardens, public parks and nurseries, market gardens, managing your allotment and garden centers. The Design elective allows students to look after large gardens, while the market gardening elective prepares learners to cultivate a site suitable for food crop production, acquire skills in propagation, cultivation, and harvesting of food crops.


Our Gardening and Landscape Design programme has strong progression into higher education institutions depending on the strand chosen by the learner. Progress to the following degree courses:

  • DCFE Level 6 Horticulture
  • National Botanic Gardens, Horticulture
  • UCD, DN272 Horticulture
  • UCD DN120 Landscape Contruction

Graduates who achieve the required standard may progress to our two-year part-time programme in Horticulture Supervision or Market Gardening Supervision at level 6 or may be eligible for advanced progression procedures to year 2 of Higher Certificate/Degree programmes in Horticulture through the CAO application process.