- An enjoyment of working outdoors
- Physical fitness
- Planning and organisational skills
- Good communication and the ability to work in a team
- An eye for detail
- Strong work ethic
- Open entry.
- If English is not your first language, you must provide:
- New Zealand University Entrance OR
- Overall Academic IELTS 5.5 with no individual band score lower than 5.0 (achieved in one test completed in the last two years), OR
- Acceptable alternative evidence of the required IELTS (see here for NZQA proficiency table and here for list of recognised proficiency tests).
If you need to improve your English Language skills, we offer a wide range of English programmes.
Please note: This programme is not available for international students.
Applicants will be selected on a first-come, first-served basis until the programme has reached full capacity.
You are required to buy some items of personal protective equipment, personal stationery and textbooks. Please note that many suppliers offer student discounts once you have enrolled and it is preferred that you wait until the first week of your programme before purchasing these items.
All costs below are approximate only.
- Steel toecap boots ($100 - $200)
- Secateurs ($40 - $120)
- Gloves ($15 - $25)
- Class 5 earmuffs ($40 - $50)
- Safety glasses ($15 - $25)
- Camera ($100 - $200)
- Printing and photo printing ($30)
- Textbooks ($200)
- Stationery ($25)
Financial assistance is available through StudyLink under course-related costs for full-time learners. Please see the Student Loans and Allowances section for more information.
Part-time learners generally aren't eligible for Studylink financial help but some support may be available depending on your circumstances. See studying part-time page on the Studylink website.
You will study
Supervisory Skills in Horticulture (10 credits)
Learn how to use interpersonal communication skills to achieve desired outcomes in horticulture.
- Supervisor responsibilities
- Instructing team members
- Allocation of work within teams
- Giving and receiving feedback
Management of Amenity Areas (20 credits)
Learn how to manage the maintenance and aesthetic effect of plants, parks and open spaces within the concept of Maramataka.
- Seasonal horticulture tasks
- Turf establishment and care
Amenity Pruning (10 credits)
Learn how to apply pruning techniques in amenity horticulture.
- Plant growth characteristics
- Plant responses to pruning
- Seasonal pruning
Applied Plant and Soil Science (15 credits)
Learn how to apply knowledge of plant and soil science to achieve management plan goals within the concept of Ahi Kaa.
- Ahi Kaa
- Properties and processes of soil
- Plant structures and processes
- Sustainable soil and plant management
Plant Identification and Naming (15 credits)
Learn to identify plants and apply plant nomenclature.
- Botanical nomenclature
- Plant identification
- Plant classification system
Plant Selection and Displays (10 credits)
Learn to select amenity plants to achieve functional and aesthetic effects
- Plant identification
- Plant selection
- Principles and elements of design
- Displaying plants
Propagation (10 credits)
Learn to propagate and grow amenity plants
- Propagation techniques
- Growing media
- Plant care
- Propagation records
Amenity Planting (10 credits)
Learn to carry out planting to achieve management plan goals
- Planting preparation
- Planting techniques
- Plant establishment
Pests, Diseases and Weeds (15 credits)
Learn to identify and describe plant health problems and control options
- Pest, disease, disorder and weed identification
- Plant health control options
- Integrated pest management plan
Asset Management (15 credits)
Learn to carry out inspections of assets and monitor maintenance schedules
- Asset monitoring and assessment
- Asset records
- Identification of work standards
Full-time learners will complete a minimum of four weeks’ work placement within the amenity sector.
You will be placed with an employer/host in industry, within Dunedin, and our horticulture staff will visit you at your worksite. Our staff will also be available by phone for students or employers to contact them. Employers/industry hosts will provide feedback to you.
Part-time learners who are already industry-based may be assessed on-the-job by our horticulture staff and/or in partnership with their employer.
On average you will undertake four days a week of practical instruction and theory teaching. In addition to this, you will carry out your own self-directed study. It is expected that you will participate in a minimum four weeks of work placement during your programme.
Further study options
If you want to progress your learning, you could study the New Zealand Certificate in Horticulture Services (Level 4) in a different strand/horticulture sector or the New Zealand Certificate in Horticulture Services (Level 5) (Amenity).
Paying for your study
The Government’s Targeted Training and Apprenticeship Fund (TTAF) is currently running but will end in December 2022. That means only your 2022 study will be covered. You may be able to get some financial help for your remaining study through the Fees Free scheme if you’re eligible (see info below).
Whilst this programme is free for you to study during 2022, the TTAF fund only covers tuition fees and compulsory costs such as student levies. It does not cover any additional costs or living costs.
You can pay for additional and living costs by yourself if that is possible or by applying for a loan or allowance through Studylink (which is only available for domestic learners).
It is important to apply for your student loan/allowance at the same time as you apply for this programme, due to the length of time Studylink take to process. Loan/allowance applications can be cancelled at any time if you decide to withdraw your programme application or if it is unsuccessful.
You can pay for additional and living costs yourself if this is possible.
As a part-time learner, you're generally not eligible for student loans and allowances through Studylink but some help may be possible depending on your circumstances (for domestic students). Check the Studylink website for more information.
The Government is also running a funding scheme called Fees Free for domestic learners. This scheme normally pays for your first year of study if you’ve never been enrolled in tertiary study over 60 credits at Level 3 or higher in New Zealand. They have confirmed that TTAF does not impact on a learner’s entitlement to also access the Fees Free scheme.
So, you’ll be covered by TTAF for your 2022 study and, if you would have originally been eligible for Fees Free, you’ll be able to access that to cover some of your remaining study.
Fees Free only covers your tuition fees. You would still need to pay for things like accommodation, living costs and placement transport costs. And the same full-time learner/part-time learner information would apply to Studylink financial support as was mentioned above.
If you have any questions about student loans and allowances, please email our Studylink Advisor: Amanda.McAra@op.ac.nz
While every effort is made to ensure that this sheet is accurate, Otago Polytechnic reserves the right to amend, alter or withdraw any of the contained information. The fees shown in this document are indicative ONLY. Both domestic and international fees are subject to change and are dependent on the development and implementation of Government policies. Please note that additional fees may from time to time be required for external examination, NZQA fees and/or additional material fees.