From Alliums to Zingiberaceae – explore the fascinating world of herbs
Used by man for thousands of years, herbs continue to enrich our lives today. They flavour our food and drink, provide the scents for toiletries and perfumes, often feature in cosmetics, and are used in both complementary medicine and many pharmaceuticals. This course opens the door to the fascinating world of herbs – you will learn how to successfully identify, grow, harvest and preserve them and about their different uses. This is accompanied by detailed study of the major groups of herbs, such as the mint, parsley, mustard and ginger families, alliums, scented geraniums and lavenders. This enjoyable, informative course – spanning designing a herb garden and try-at-home recipes to commercial herb production and marketing – provides a framework of knowledge you can develop into a lifelong passion or a career growing or working with herbs.
Your first set of course materials will be sent to you when you enrol. You can start as soon as you want and progress through the course at your own pace, studying when and where you choose.
This flexibility makes it easy to fit learning around work and family commitments.
The extensive course materials have been developed by gardening experts and are clear and straightforward, so your studying is easy and enjoyable. As you complete each lesson, your tutor will promptly return your marked assignment with constructive feedback and guidance. (You can also contact your tutor or the support team for help at any point during your studies.)
The course includes all the required study materials.
There is no formal examination. On successful completion you will be awarded an HCC Certificate. You have 2 years to complete the course.
We are proud of our friendly, caring ethos and aim to do all we can to help you succeed.
Our tutors are all experienced, highly qualified and passionate about sharing their love of their subject. You can phone or email your tutor throughout the course – to ask questions, for advice, encouragement or to draw on their wealth of knowledge.
You can also contact the support team who are here to help you Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.
Lesson 1 – The marketplace for herbs; history; and nature of a herb nursery; soil fertility; designing a herb garden
Lesson 2 – Major herb families; naming herbs; collecting seeds; garlic; herb gardens
Lesson 3 – Umbelliferae family; parsley and its commercial importance; pest and disease control; viruses, bacteria, fungi and pests; cumin, anise and caraway
Lesson 4 – Umbelliferae continued; chervil, coriander, dill, fennel, sweet cicely; herb gardens; theme gardens; places to visit; use of terracotta and ironwork
Lesson 5 – Lamiaceae family; the mints; commercial production of mint; pest & disease control mints; weed control
Lesson 6 – Lamiaceae continued; basil, marjoram, oregano, sage; preserving herbs; vinegar and salt as preservatives; biology and chemistry of herbs
Lesson 7 – Lamiaceae continued; rosemary, thyme, summer and winter savory; marketing the products; uses of herbs; herb essence and distillation; plant perfumes
Lesson 8 – Allium family; chives, Welsh onions, pearly onions, bulb onions, rocambole, shallots, ramsoms; protective structures; erecting a polythene tunnel; frames; microclimates; annual tasks in the herb garden
Lesson 9 – Cruciferae family; cress, mustard, horseradish; Zingiberaceae family; cardamom, ginger, turmeric; miscellaneous herbs and spices; tarragon, bay, saffron; sweet and chili peppers; recipes
Lesson 10 – The scented geraniums; lavenders; aromatherapy; herbalism; organisations
If needed you have 2 years to complete the course. Many students are able to complete this course in approximately 6-12 months*.
*Timescales are approximate and depend upon application and motivation.
There are no exams. On successful completion of this course you will receive an HCC Certificate*, graded to show the standard you have reached. The HCC’s reputation means this can be highly regarded on a CV and, combined with your portfolio of coursework, is evidence of your achievements (whether you are applying for a job or a more advanced study course).
* The HCC Certificate will be issued once you have successfully completed your course and finished your course payments.
RHS Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Plant Growth, Propagation and Development
RHS Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Garden Planning, Establishment and Maintenance
Start Gardening – the Basics and Beyond
The Principles of Gardening
Garden Planting and Layout
You do not need previous gardening knowledge or experience to enrol on this course.