Professional Diploma in Garden Design

This course is open to those seeking a change in career and who have no previous experience in garden design. Based on what a course should cover, offered by the Society of Garden Designers(the only professional association that exists for garden designers), it provides a sound vocational basis for the real world of business. It is also a course to advance the career of those already running their own business in landscape contracting or nursery practice who wish to offer the additional service of design to their clients. Since the course is completed in one year and the timetable allows the student to continue working part time while studying, it is also a very practical option for the serious career person.

Good garden design, like any other form of design depends upon a pleasing interplay between basic principles such as form, composition, balance and contrast. These images illustrate some of these principles.

The aims of this course are to deliver dynamic and up to date information in a short but practical timeframe, so that the student can start the business of designing gardens as soon as possible. It is encouraged that students take on design work (be it for themselves, friends or family) whilst on the course in order to grasp the practicalities as the theory is being learnt.

The course is organised for small class sizes and plenty of one to one tuition, allowing for flexibility in the teaching methods to suit individuals. Garden visits and site inspections can be organised at shorter notice and the student lecturer ratio means a greater understanding of the methods involved in bringing about a more effective design. New garden designers are always wishing to work alongside more experienced designers in the early part of their careers so here is a chance to do just that whilst still on a course.

Flow of ideas
Students from past years have come from a diverse array of interesting backgrounds, often entirely unrelated to garden design. A vital part of studying any new course involves the people you meet and how they influence you. Skills and experiences from other careers make stimulating and informed sessions.

Since 1996 many students have gone on to become practising garden designers, full members of the Society of Garden Designers, a Chelsea and a Hampton Court medal winner.

This course is only the beginning of a career in garden design. To help set goals and monitor future achievements, students should aim for full membership of the Society of Garden Designers. To do this there is a requirement of three completed projects from design to construction. These need to be presented to an adjudication panel of registered members. For more details visit www.sgd.org.uk All students on the course are included as a student member of the Society of Garden Designers.

Chateaux Gourdon: Use of light and shade

Chateaux Gourdon: Use of light and shade

Villa Noailles: Proportion in design

Villa Noailles: Proportion in design

The Garden Design Studio, Plumpton, Sussex

The Garden Design Studio, Plumpton, Sussex

Design Installation

Design Installation