This module will develop candidates’ understanding of factors affecting plant growth. The module will therefore incorporate the delicate balance of nutrients and pH levels that are required for plants to flourish, as well as drawing attention to the signs of specific nutrient deficiencies. Such study will allow the candidate to appreciate the importance of good quality soil, and so will then also draw upon: soil evaluation; management; and proper irrigation. In addition, candidates will examine compost and varying growing media.
‘You can trust the RHS to teach you everything you possibly need to know’ ~ Jamie Butterworth
Physical and chemical properties of soil
Methods of soil improvement
Role of water in soil
Plant nutrients and signs of nutrient deficiency
1. Physical and Chemical Properties of Soils
In this lesson you will learn all about soil and how it supports plant growth. This will include soil formation and composition, as well as how to evaluate soil.
2. Water and Soil Irrigation
This lesson covers the essentials for healthy plant growth. You will also examine soil water and its varying forms, before moving on to look at irrigation and its benefits.
3. Methods of Soil Improvement and Management
Here you will learn all about the cultivation of soil, including how to test soil and cultivate it yourself. You will then learn how to consolidate seed beds and will consider the ‘seed bed’ system as a whole.
4. Organic Matter and its Importance in the Soil
This lesson tackles the contribution and benefit of living organisms to soil health, as well as the process of decomposition of organic matter. From here you will study compost, including: the sources of compost; methods of storing compost; and how to make a compost bed.
5. Nutrients and Fertilisers
You will be introduced to the nutrients needed by plants. Once you have come to terms with the individual nutrients required by a plant, you will study the signs of nutrient deficiency, as well as looking at soil pH and the effects of different pH levels.
6. Composts and Growing Media
This lesson will focus on container gardening. However it will also cover alternative growing mediums to peat, and introduce you to the basics of hydroponics.
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