Learning with experts

RHS: Plant Nutrition & Roots [2]Taught by Hilary Thomas

Start anytime
  • Course suitable for all abilities

  • You'll know the Physical & Chemical Properties of Soils

  • The role of water in the soil

  • You'll be shown methods of soil improvement


This module will enable candidates to develop an understanding of the constituents, properties and management of soils and growing media.

The Curriculum

  • 1. Physical & Chemical Properties of Soils

    Soil formation and the composition of the soil: In this lesson you will learn about the functions of the soil and how it has to provide every-thing that the plant needs in the way of support, plant nutrients, water and oxygen. We will then look at how soil is actually formed and what makes it a clay or sandy soil and how the addition of organic matter can improve any soil type.

  • 2. Water & Soil Irrigation

    The role of water in the soil and methods of irrigation: For healthy growth a plant requires a constant supply of water and nutrients which it takes up from the soil through its roots. In this lesson we will look at how soil structure affects the water holding capacity and the different methods that can be used to irrigate once the soil becomes dry

  • 3. Methods of Soil Improvement & Management

    Methods of soil improvement and management: In this lesson we will look at the different methods of soil cultivation such as digging and rotavating and how they affect soil structure. The importance of organic matter in improv-ing soil structure and ‘the no dig method’ and growing plants in raised beds will also be considered.

  • 4. Organic Matter & its Importance in the Soil

    Organic matter and its importance in the soil: Living organisms in the soil contribute to the decomposition of organic matter and the for-mation of humus, but other organisms such as earthworms also have a beneficial effect on soil structure by creating a network of interconnecting tunnels that improve aeration and water movement

  • 5. Nutrients and fertilisers

    The role of nutrients in the plant and the use of fertilisers: In this lesson we will look at the role of the major and minor nutrients in the plant and how they can be supplemented through the use of organic and inorganic fertilisers. We will also consider how soil pH affects plant growth and the range of plants that have specific pH requirements

  • 6. Composts & Growing Media

    Growing media and how to grow plants in containers: In this last lesson we will look at the various composts and growing media that are available to the gardener and how to grow plants successfully in containers. We will also consider how crops such as tomatoes and cucumbers are grown commercially using a system called hydroponics

Meet your expert tutor

Hilary Thomas was Head of the School of Garden Design at the highly regarded Capel Manor College where she taught both Horticulture and Garden and Planting Design for over 20 years. Her students won ...read more

Why you'll love learning here

  • Exclusive: Be coached directly by Hilary Thomas

  • Motivating: Intimate community of students, share ideas and feedback

  • Fun: Get a new perspective with classmates from around the world

  • Inspiring: Real experts sharing their secrets

  • Convenient: Fits with real life. Study whenever and wherever you like

  • Forever: Lifetime access to videos, notes and classmates

Buy now and start whenever you like


  • Start anytime
  • Online classroom
  • Expert tutor videos
  • Downloadable notes
  • Collaborate with classmates
  • Lifetime access to course


  • Everything in Peer, plus:
  • Marked assignments, problem solving and discussion with Hilary Thomas
  • Certificate of completion

Also available as part of a collection

An easy and cost effective way to master an entire subject.

Our community loves us

As recommended by