Horticultural tutor or lecturer

A horticultural tutor or lecturer develops courses and teaches horticultural theory and practice in schools, further education colleges and community and adult learning environments

Training, qualifications and skills HNC, HND or degree in horticulture as well as teaching qualifications (such as TQFE, PGCE), which are usually completed on the job
Career progression opportunities It's possible to progress from tutor to programme manager, to head of department and on to dean of faculty.
Useful links Botanic Gardens Education Network
RHS Qualifications
Chartered Institute of Horticulture
Get into Teaching

Focus on: Lecturer in horticulture

Heather Munro
Elmwood College
Full time, salary up to £35k
Fife, Scotland

I teach horticulture to people of all ages and abilities, from young people who are just beginning their careers in horticulture, older people who are changing careers to retired people who want to learn more about their gardens. My classes also include secondary school students (some with learning difficulties or behavioural problems) and people with disabilities. I love teaching and passing on my own passion for plants, although it was never really planned.

It’s essential to love plants and people. Getting as much practical horticultural experience as possible is helpful, as is the desire to keep learning. A large dollop of patience also comes in handy.

After a 15-year career in the fire service, I needed a change and chose to work in horticulture since I’d always loved gardening and growing things. I studied for an HNC in horticulture and then gained practical horticultural experience including three years as a nursery manager. I was encouraged by a teaching colleague to apply for my current job and haven’t looked back!

Focus on: Horticultural lecturer

Sheri Whiting
Plumpton College
Full time, salary up to £35k

I’m responsible for teaching a number of further education full-time, part-time and short courses in the theory and practice of horticulture. Sharing my horticultural knowledge with others, especially on horticulture for wellbeing, is something I’m really passionate about, so I’m looking forward to developing new and exciting courses on this subject in the near future. 

A passion for horticulture and the outdoors will naturally pass on through your teaching. Look for opportunities to gain teaching experience either by volunteering or shadowing.

I changed career to work in horticulture and gained a number of different qualifications and experience by working in gardens such as RHS Garden Wisley. I recently worked for the mental health charity Mind where I used my knowledge of horticulture to help improve the mental health and wellbeing of local community members through eco-therapy.

Get involved

The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.