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Online Horticulture Schools and Colleges: How to Choose

Learn about important considerations when selecting an online horticulture school. Read on to get an overview of the program options, on-campus requirements, and common topics offered for the field of study.

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Before selecting an online horticulture program, it's important to consider all your options. You first want to decide whether you'll need a certificate, a bachelor's degree, or a master's degree, and make sure you look at more than one school before deciding which online program is right for you.

How to Select an Online Horticulture School

Numerous schools and colleges offer online programs either entirely or partially online in the field of horticulture. These programs are available at the certificate, bachelor's and master's degree level. Students will want to consider program types and award levels when selecting an online school.

Program Delivery

Both fully online and hybrid format programs are available. The hybrid programs, particularly at the undergraduate or graduate level, often require students to come to campus and take examinations or complete work in laboratories. Sometimes students can actually complete lab work and internships at a partner school or other facility where he or she resides.

Award Level

Most employers look for candidates with at least a bachelor's degree, although job seekers who want to be supervisors or managers sometimes need a master's degree. Certificate programs are available for those who want to brush up on their horticulture skills or figure out if horticulture is the right career. Associate's and doctoral degree programs are not typically available online, but students can earn these degrees in a traditional classroom setting.

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Floriculture Management
  • Greenhouse Management
  • Landscaping and Groundskeeping
  • Ornamental Horticulture
  • Plant Nursery Operations
  • Turf Management

List of Online Programs Related to Horticulture

Online Certificate of Completion in Horticulture Management

Online certificate programs in horticulture management are most often offered through a college's or university's continuing education division, and many have prerequisites. Some programs send gardening kits home for students to use for homework assignments, while others allow students to communicate via online discussion forums. Students learn about:

  • Nursery management
  • Composting
  • Plan nutrient
  • Pest management
  • Herbicide action mechanisms

Online Bachelor of Science in Horticulture

Students can complete a majority of the coursework via the Internet, but most programs require students to complete lab work on campus or at a facility where the student lives. The online portion is delivered through streaming video, DVDs and interactive media applications. A distance learning bachelor's degree in horticulture includes courses in:

  • Viticulture
  • Postharvest physiology
  • Public garden administration
  • Plant propagation

Online Master of Science in Horticulture

Online master's degree programs in horticulture can be a good alternative for students who are already employed. Hybrid programs allow students to listen to lectures through interactive television and complete coursework online. These programs usually do not have a thesis requirement. Students may be required to visit the school for an exam before graduation. Typical online courses include:

  • Applied geostatistics
  • Advanced interiorscaping
  • Crop production
  • Arboriculture
  • Quantitative agricultural remote sensing

Schools with Online Programs in Horticulture

Colorado State University offers a 120-credit online Bachelor of Science in Horticulture program. You can take courses including plant identification, cultivation and pest management. If you are interested in managing your own horticulture business, you can also take courses that focus on finance and marketing through this program.

At Oregon State University, the online bachelor's horticulture program offers courses that deal with real-world issues current horticulturists face, where students work in labs, with diagnostics, and on projects. In addition to online coursework, students must complete a 360-hour internship.

If you hold a bachelor's degree and are interested in getting a horticulture certificate, you can go through the Horticultural Landscape Management Certificate program at Texas Tech University. You can take required courses fully online, earning 12 credit hours, and this program can be completed in conjunction with a related master's program.

When deciding on an online horticulture program, you need to consider several things, such as program level offered. Also find out if the program is fully available online or if there are in-person requirements.

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