2018 RHS Courses

Winterbourne Centre for Horticulture now offers RHS qualifications.  Information about the courses we will run in 2018 will be added to this page once it is available.  If you are interested in our RHS courses, please contact us using the Ask a Question button on this page.

2017 courses

In 2017 we offered two Level 2 courses.  The Level 2 qualification is perfect for anyone wishing to expand their knowledge, or even get started on their dream career.

RHS Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Garden Planning, Establishment and Maintenance

This theory course is intended for those that have a general interest in horticulture or wishing to work in professional horticulture in a variety of roles.

The course provides the underpinning scientific knowledge of garden planning, selecting and establishing a range of garden plants. Also covered are the principles behind growing food crops outdoors and growing under protection: house plants, glasshouses and conservatory growing. To achieve the qualification you will sit exams in February and June or you may wish to study just for interest. The units in the qualification are designed for part-time study so it is particularly suitable for those who are working in the industry and wishing to study part-time in order to progress their careers or prepare for further study at level 3.

RHS Level 2 Certificate in Practical Horticulture

This course is ideal for the keen amateur gardener and for those wishing to work in professional horticulture in a variety of roles. It is an in-depth practical course designed for those that wish to gain a range of practical horticultural skills including propagation, establishing and maintaining plants. You will also identify garden plants, pests and diseases.

You can read about the course content on the RHS website.

RHS Courses at Winterbourne

Our Tutors

Darren Rudge BSc (Hons) Hort, Cert Ed

Darren has spent his career delivering and managing horticultural and other land based qualifications as well as running a successful garden design consultancy.  He was one of the first recipients of the City and Guilds medal of excellence, awarded for his teaching and training.  He works as a quality assurance coordinator for a number of organisations, ensuring standards are maintained.  Darren regularly has articles published in the gardening press and is the permanent gardening expert for BBC WM 95.6 in the West Midlands, and was nominated for a garden media guild award in 2016.  Darren’s enthusiastic approaches to teaching and garden design aim to inspire and motivate, and are developed to make learning both enjoyable and progressive.

Helen Wood BSc (Hons) Hort, PGCE, MCIoH

Helen has over 18 years of experience of maintaining and designing gardens, alongside a dual career teaching horticulture and garden design.  Helen is an experienced and enthusiastic horticulturalist and teacher, always ready to share her interest, expertise and knowledge about plants and gardens.  She has run a successful garden design consultancy for 9 years, working on private and commercial gardens to the highest standards.  Helen also works with Royal Horticultural Society Qualifications as an examiner and has an in-depth knowledge of RHS courses and qualifications.

Helen and Darren have worked in partnership for many years.  They have designed and built domestic and commercial gardens and exhibited show gardens winning 5 medals at BBC Gardeners World Live; 1 bronze medal, 3 silver medals and in June 2011 won Gold and Best in Show for their natural playground, Naturally Playful.  They have also worked together to design innovative and inspiring teaching programmes, including RHS Certificates and even degree level study.  Both enjoy imparting their substantial knowledge using a range of teaching methods; for them there is no compromise when it comes to quality and enjoyment.

Winterbourne Centre for Horticulture is a RHS Qualifications Approved Centre.

RHS Approved Centre


Once you have enrolled on your course you will be entitled to obtain student membership of the RHS for just £10; further information can be found on the RHS website.  Winterbourne students will also enjoy free access to Winterbourne House and Garden for the duration of your study, excluding ticketed events.

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