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Course Title: Soil Management – Horticulture BHT105

Soil Management – Horticulture BHT105

Horticulture Course
Price:£340 Qualification: Certificate

Treat your soil and grow great plants! Good soil conditions are critical to the healthy growth of most plants. Develop an understanding of physical & chemical properties of soils, carry out simple tests to determine soil characteristics, learn ways of treating soil to grow plants. Specifically designed for ornamental gardens, landscaping, container growing, and turf situations. This course prepares you for the RHS Advanced certificate or diploma module examinations.

Course Structure for Soil Management – Horticulture BHT105

  • There are 8 lessons:

    1  Physical and Chemical Properties of Soils

    • How soils develop
    • The main rock forming minerals: silicates, carbonates, oxides and sulphates
    • Types of rock: igneous, sedimentary, metamorphic
    • Denitrification, immobilisation, mineralisation and ammonium fixation
    • Understanding soil function: plant nutrition, support, water and air supply
    • Naming a soil
    • Improving soils for plant culture
    • Organic matter
    • Plant nutrition
    • Nutrient availability and pH
    • Cation exchange capacity
    • Conductivity
    • Salinity build up
    • The nutrient elements
    • Major elements and minor elements
    • Total salts
    • Diagnosing nutrient problems
    • Fertilisers
    • Composting

    2  Soil and Plant Tissue Test Methods

    • Soil sampling
    • Common soil tests: pH, texture, structure, etc
    • Tissue analysis
    • Different methods od measuring pH
    • Water content of soil
    • Fertiliser solubility
    • Testing the effect of lime
    • Laboratory testing of soils
    • Measuring salinity
    • Colorimeters
    • Bulk density
    • Understanding soil analysis
    • Deciding when and how to test

    3  Soil Science and Health

    • Organic carbon
    • Available phosphorus
    • Soil colour
    • Texture and its affect on plant growth
    • Structure and its affect on plant growth
    • Consistence: affect on plant growth
    • Depth of profile, pH, porosity and other things affecting plant growth
    • Soil classification and description: different horizons
    • Factors affecting soil formation: parent material, climate, ecosystem, etc
    • Weathering processes in soil formation: physical, chemical, geochemical
    • Pedochemical weathering

    4  Container Growing

    • Introduction
    • What to grow
    • Problems with containers
    • Care of containers
    • Comparing materials: plastics, terracotta, fibreglass, etc
    • Aesthetics of containers
    • Potting up
    • Potting mixes
    • Ideas for container gardens
    • History of potting mxes
    • UC mixes
    • Soilless mixes
    • Testing for toxins in potting media
    • Propagating media
    • Problems with Organic materials in media
    • Coir
    • Rockwool
    • Components of potting media
    • Cleanliness with soils and potting media
    • Hydroponics

    5  Land Degradation and Other Soil Problems

    • Chemical damage to soil
    • Builders rubbish in soils
    • Salinity
    • Dogs or cats urinating
    • Growing plants in dry areas
    • Soil degradation
    • Erosion
    • Salinity
    • Acidification
    • Compaction
    • Chemical residues

    6 Soil Management Applications

    • Aims of soil management
    • Soil management in orchards
    • Fertilizer application
    • Soil covers
    • Soil management for Vegetables

    7  Organic Techniques and Soil Management

    • What is organic growing
    • Organic principles for overcoming soil problems
    • Natural plant nutrition
    • Trace elements
    • Earthworms
    • Types of mulch and its use
    • Nutrition managementin a plant nursery
    • Applying liquid fertilizers
    • Organic fertilizers
    • Natural fertilizers
    • Mineral rock fertilizers and soil conditioners
    • Apatite phosphate rock
    • Dolamite
    • Gypsum
    • Soil management in market gardens
    • Crop rotation
    • Determining kind and quantity of fertilizer to use
    • Cover crops

    8  Soils and Managing Earthworks

    • Eath forming
    • Machinery
    • Creating mounds
    • Sources of “fill”
    • Drainage
    • Improving drainage
    • Improving surface drainage after construction
    • Designing a drainage system
    • Improving permeability during construction
    • Layout of drains
    • Types of drains

    Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school’s tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.

Aims for Soil Management – Horticulture BHT105

  • To describe the significance of different physical and chemical properties of soil – in relation to the growing of plants
  • To correctly extract samples of soil, appropriate to different situations; and then conduct a range of simple tests to determine varying characteristics of the sample taken
  • To further explain the characteristics of a soil, scientifically; and relate those characteristics to the capacity of a soil to grow plants
  • To recommend appropriate selection and management of potting and other alternative media for growing plants in containers
  • To diagnose and recommend the treatment of a variety of soil degradation problems
  • To determine appropriate management programs for different soils in horticultural situations
  • To recommend soil management practices which are not going to cause a degradation of soil quality
  • Explain the methods used in managing earthworks in a way which is sensitive to soil condition

Price: £340
Qualification: Certificate
Estimated Course Duration: 100 hours
Available Learning Methods: Online, USB (+£5) and Correspondence (+£35)
Enrolment Dates: Our courses are self-paced and you can start at anytime

Enrol today and develop transferable expertise and skills in this subject

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As soon as payment has been confirmed you will be able to access your course materials online within 24 hours. Any further correspondence will arrive at your address between 3-4 days.

For any Questions or to Enrol please call 01227 789 649

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