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RHS: Classification & Function (1)Taught by Dr Noel Kingsbury

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‘You can trust the RHS to teach you everything you possibly need to know’ ~ Jamie Butterworth

  • Suitable for all abilities

  • Plant classification system

  • Plant structure

  • Chemical processes within a plant


This module will enable candidates to develop an understanding of the basis on which higher plants are classified and named, and to appreciate the role and function of morphological and anatomical features in higher plants. The module will ensure that the fundamental physiological processes within the plant are understood including photosynthesis, respiration and water movement. Additionally students will understand the mechanisms of pollination, fertilisation, seed formation and subsequent germination.

The Curriculum

  • 1. Plant Groups of Significance to Horticulture

    This lesson tackles what plants are and how they work. You will be introduced to: terminology and the naming of plants; distinctions between plant groups; and the life cycles of annual perennials.

  • 2. Botanical and Horticultural Plant Names

    In this lesson you will learn about plant binomial names - what they are and why we have them. The lesson also examines cultivars and hybrids.

  • 3. Stages in Plant Growth

    You will be guided through the life cycle of a plant - from germination to a plant’s juvenile phase, through its adult phase and into its senescence phase. The varying lifespans of ephemerals, biennials and annuals will also be covered.

  • 4. Structure of Plant Cells and Functions of Plant Cell Components and Tissues

    Here you will learn some of the basic characteristics of plants, including the structure of the plant itself, and the structure of its individual cells. You will examine the different roots and tissues that plants present in order to understand how plants grow.

  • 5. Structure and Functions of Leaves, Fruits and Seeds

    In this lesson you will begin by covering leaf characteristics and how each one impacts leaf function. You will then move on to look at the process of plant reproduction, including pollination and germination.

  • 6. Photosynthesis, Respiration, Movement of Water and Minerals Through the Plant

    This lesson will tackle topics such as the rate of photosynthesis and the factors affecting this. You will then study respiration (including: aerobic and anaerobic; and the rate of respiration), before examining the process of osmosis.

Meet your expert tutor

Dr Noel Kingsbury is an acclaimed garden designer, best-selling author of numerous books and long-time collaborator of the renowned designer Piet Oudolf. With a doctorate from the University of Sheff...read more

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