Plant pathologist

Plant pathologists study plant diseases, which can involve research, diagnosis of problems and advice on treatments

Training, qualifications and skills An agricultural degree or a degree in a plant-based subject is usually required plus either experience of growing plants with a specific interest in plant health or a further degree in plant pathology
Career progression opportunities Other areas open to plant pathologists are agricultural consultancy, research posts and positions in the UK Animal and Plant Health Agency
Useful links UK Animal and Plant Health Agency
British Society for Plant Pathology

Focus on: Plant pathologist

Fay Newberry
Part time, salary up to £35k
RHS Garden Wisley

I work in plant diagnostics, which is a bit like being a GP for plants. I try to work out why a sick plant is unhealthy and what can be done to try and improve its condition or produce a cure.

Spend time looking at wild and garden plants, many of which suffer from diseases. Take an interest in these and try to work out what they are.

Although I received my training for this rule by studying for a PhD, many people who have been growing plants in their garden or on an allotment for a long time will also know a lot about what ails plants and what can be done to help them.

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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.