Are you a professional horticulturist that needs to expand your knowledge in plant pests and diseases, other plant problems and their management?

For those that:
  • Work in crop production
  • Work in plant production nurseries
  • Work in parks management
  • Work in grounds management
This course is designed for the professional horticulturist - the knowledge gained from this course will extend your abilities to beat the bugs!
The professional horticulturist needs to not only be able to treat disease and other plant problems but to prevent them in the first place where possible.

This course is your first step towards that goal. It develops your understanding of all types of plant diseases (fungal, viral, bacterial, non-infectious); their life cycles, and ways they can be controlled both with and without chemicals.

(This course complements Horticulture III. For the best understanding of plant health, do both of these courses)

Plant production is reduced significantly every year, due to pathological problems

To control these problems is to increase productivity, and for the horticultural business; that means increased profit margins.


PLANT PATHOLOGY IS NOT simply a study of pests and diseases. Some pests are in fact not pathological problems, and there are pathological problems which are not pests or diseases.

PLANT PATHOLOGY is about problems in plants caused by physiological damage or irritation at a cellular level. (ie: It is concerned with problems which affect parts of the plant cell, leading to malfunctions in the normal processes which occur within the plant).


Course Outline

There are eight lessons in this course, each one taking around 12 hours to complete. There are three main sections to the course:

1. Introduction

2. Types of Diseases

3. The Lifecycle of a Disease

4. Control Techniques

5. Selected Pathogen Diseases ‑ Ornamentals

6. Selected Pathogen Diseases ‑ Crops

7. Non-Infectious Diseases

8. Special Project


Duration: 100 hours



1. The first part of the course develops an understanding of the different types of problems which can occur and how to identify them.

Terminology is covered in some depth, so as to enable the student to be able to read & understand books & articles written about plant diseases. Other major topics of study include "symptoms" (i.e. Necroses, Hypoplases, Hyperplases, etc), "types of pathogens" (i.e. Viruses, bacteria, fungi, Nematodes, etc), and the life cycle of a disease.

2. The second part of the course looks at how to control pathology problems. The major methods of controlling pathogens (i.e. Sanitation, resistant varieties, biological controls, soil drenches & chemical sprays, etc) are all studied, along with types of equipment & safety.

3. The third part of the course looks at some of the most common plant pathology problems in commercial horticulture, how to identify them and how they are controlled.

Some of the problems studied include cinnamon fungus, tree decay, powdery mildew, nematodes, brown rot, blights, turf fungi, damping off and non infectious problems such as temperature burns, air pollution, wind burn and excessive light.

The course is a highly practical one involving as much time in practical/field work as it does theory.

No prior formal training is required, though anyone undertaking this course is expected to have some experience in horticulture (either having worked in the industry or having studied in some related discipline.


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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]