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RHS Exams.

Apologies if this has been covered before.

? Has anyone taken these exams and if so has it been worthwhile.

I have a allotment and although I will not be taking them I am curious if they are relevant

Thanks friends........snow on the way.
Everyone is just trying to be Happy.....So lets help Them.


  • AnniDAnniD Posts: 11,959
    edited February 2021
    I think l'm right in saying that @LG_ has taken some and may be able to help ?
    (If they don't mind that is).
    Ithink  there are several forum members who have experience of these exams .
  • Quite a few of us have done these I did them about 5 years ago I enjoyed it very much. I wanted to learn more about a wider range of plants & methods as I have primarily been an Allotment gardener most of my life. I did learn quite a lot some of it more use than other parts but all knowledge is useful in some way. It was good to meet other like minded people. On the course I did the class was almost 50:50 of those wanting a career, and those like me purely for interest. I would not have just studied and taken the exams in isolation.  I think @chicky is doing them at the moment. 
    AB Still learning

  • chickychicky Posts: 10,396
    I am doing the Principles course and I’m loving it.  I find it fascinating finding out why all the things I have been observing for years actually happen.  The first semester has been quite sciencey, and we have just started the second which seems to be more about design and learning about a wide range of plants you can use.

    I’m doing the course for interest, not for a career.  Like @Allotment Boy I would say we have a 50:50 mix of those doing it as a qualification for a career, and those doing it just to find out a bit more.
  • Hi @NewBoy2 I’m currently studying the RHS level 2 myself but have not yet taken any exams as February was cancelled. It is very enjoyable learning about ‘why’ something happens. Granted some parts won’t necessarily be beneficial for someone to know but is very interesting! I’m studying it to help develop a career but I’m doing it from home. If you do think about taking the course I’ll try and help in any way I can.
  • LG_LG_ Posts: 4,255
    I don't really have anything to add to what others have said. I did the full L2 diploma and loved it all, then went on to do a L3 (non-RHS and non-exam-based) design course, which I'm part way through. I will never see plants and gardens in the same way again!
    'If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.'
    - Cicero
  • I did the RHS exams some years ago. I enjoyed it very much as I did it at college so had a day a week with fellow garden enthusiasts. Not all of us did the exams, as some were doing it out of pure interest and didn’t see a need to sit them. I felt I learnt as much from the lecturers, their personal experience etc, as I did from the syllabus. If you aren’t doing them for career reasons I’m not sure I would want to do them on my own at home.

    I have found the knowledge useful especially how much I learnt about individual plants but the syllabus was (is?) very traditional. Organic gardening/principles felt a niche topic rather than a key part of the syllabus. They may have updated the syllabus since then but going off the advice online I somehow doubt it. Having said that I think the courses are worth doing as it gives you a good knowledge base whether you wish to follow their advice or garden differently. 

    I also did the practical course - that was great fun and I felt I learnt a lot.

     If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.”—Marcus Tullius Cicero
    East facing, top of a hill clay-loam, cultivated for centuries (7 years by me). Birmingham
  • They do update the syllabus quite regularly,  so I think it is gradually changing but I agree it's quite traditional.  On the other hand our lecturer was at pains to point out a wide range of methods and techniques.  One person on the course criticised what she saw as promoting chemical products for pests & diseases. His answer was the syllabus required us to know about all the alternatives but it was up to us what we chose to use. It was the same with a lot of other topics. 
    Like @LG_I did the full diploma. Our lecturer was superb but I learned a lot from the other students, who came from a wide range of backgrounds. 
    AB Still learning

  • NewBoy2NewBoy2 Posts: 1,813
    Thanks all.
    Everyone is just trying to be Happy.....So lets help Them.
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