All You Need to Know About Growing Crops

This comprehensive introduction to crop growing covers a huge amount of ground. Learn about different types of crop systems, how to establish and nurture crops, and techniques used in traditional and organic growing systems.

Use this course to help you develop a solid foundation in production horticulture. Over twelve lessons you will cover site, crop selection, soil management, cut flowers, vegetables, berries, nuts, herbs, tree fruits, other crops, managing a market garden and more. 

Learn to Grow a Broad Range of Horticultural Crops

Discover growing methods for a wide range of different types of crops from nursery plants and trees to nuts, vegetables, fruits and cut flowers.

See how soil is related to production yield and quality, how organic methods can be applied to any crop and which types of systems are better suited to particular crops.

Scope of Course

This course is relevant to the full range of outdoor crop production systems.

The main systems used for commercial cropping are:

  • Row cropping - the most commonly used production system; used to grow vegetables and herbs, cut flowers, fruit and nut trees, field-grown nursery stock. Advantages of row cropping include ease of access for machinery and people during planting, crop maintenance and harvesting. This system enables good water management (i.e. it is suitable for trickle irrigation systems) and weed control (using mulches between plants and mowing between rows).
  • Broad acre - most commonly used for large-scale vegetable and grain production. Also used for cut flowers, turf growing, and large-scale orchards (e.g. fruit grown for canning and juicing).
  • Hydroponics - a specialised and intensive system most commonly used to grow leafy vegetables, tomatoes and strawberries. Can be used to grow many other crops including cut flowers and root vegetables.
  • Containerised systems - used for growing nursery stock outdoors.
  • Trellising systems - used for supporting and training deciduous and vine fruits.
  • Hedging - used for tree and berry fruits, and nuts. Also used for growing nursery stock plants (to provide cutting propagation material).

Course Structure and Contents

This course has ten lessons.

1. Crop Production Systems

This lesson develops your capacity to understand and explain different cropping systems and their appropriate application for the production of different types of crops

2. Organic Crop Production

Organic production is a significant sector of the industry in many countries. This lesson lays the foundation for understanding both the horticultural techniques and the requirements for organic certification in different parts of the world.

3. Soils and Nutrition

Soils are a foundation for all horticulture, Through this lesson you learn about soil chemistry and the physical properties of soil; and how they function to provide water air and nutrients needed for optimum plant growth.

4. Nursery Stock Production

Learn about production nurseries, the different types, the sorts of plants they produce and how they are produced.

5. Tree Fruit Production

Review and describe the commercial production of a wide range of tree fruit crops.

6. Soft Fruits Production

Develop an understanding of the techniques used to produce a range of soft fruits.

7. Vegetable Production

Develop an understanding of the techniques used to grow a range of vegetables.

8. Cut Flower Production

Develop an understanding of the commercial production of outdoor cut flowers.

9. Herbs, Nuts and Miscellaneous Crops

Develop an understanding of the commercial production of herbs, nuts and other miscellaneous crops.

10. Crop Production Risk Assessment

Understand the risks that may occur in outdoor crop production, from physical risks to farm workers, to economic and environmental risks.


Duration: 100 hours


How This Course Can Help You

This course can be used as part of a larger qualification or studied by itself. It will be of benefit to people who wish to start up a market garden business or for those wishing to gain employment in farming enterprises. It is suited to:

  • Market gardeners
  • Farmers
  • Horticulturists
  • Hobby farmers
  • Business entrepreneurs



Just go to the top of this page for pricing and enrolment options. If you have any questions you can contact us now, by:
Phone (UK) 01384 44272, (International) +44 (0) 1384 442752, or

Email us at [email protected]