Horticulture, Estates & Agriculture

Dundee and Angus College has one of the most developed and well-resourced teaching facilities for Horticulture, Estates and Agriculture in Scotland with experienced staff who have worked in various areas of the sector.

We offer a range of introductory, NC, NPA, SVQ and City and Guilds courses that are delivered across all three of our campuses. We tailor our courses to meet the requirements of modern industry and can help you cultivate the skills required to maximise your employment opportunities.

Charlotte's Story

When Charlotte Paterson’s children got older, she decided it was time to decide on her own career path.

“While visiting the Dundee Flower and Food Festival I was invited to join a class in the Horticulture Department at Dundee and Angus College. From my first day there, my mind was made up to become a gardener!”

Charlotte began with the Access to Horticulture course then progressed to SCQF Levels 4 and 5 before attending the University of the Highlands and Islands to study an HNC in Horticulture.

“During my time with D&A I started volunteering at Brechin Castle in the Walled Garden. I found the combination worked well with being able to practise the theory learned at college in a live situation at the gardens. I really enjoyed all aspects of the course work from plant anatomy, propagation, lawn care, plant nutrition, soils and growing media, to garden design, garden machinery, building drystone dykes, laying a variety of paving, building brick walls and much more.”

Charlotte was then offered the position of seasonal gardener at Brechin.

“I was lucky to have the best of both worlds, from the encouragement of the college tutors and a Head Gardener who would advise on any aspects I was unsure of.”

A few years on, Charlotte is now Head Gardener herself.

“It has been a very steep learning curve, but I can always fall back on the basics from my courses. I use the term ‘Head Gardener’ lightly as behind the scenes I have an army of advisors – my tutors from college and the last two very experienced Head Gardeners, all of whom I call on regularly!

“It is so rewarding when you see the plants you have cared for growing well but it can be equally frustrating when things go wrong. I know it is a trade in which I will never stop learning. I am always using the skills I learned at college when searching details about various plants. Other gardeners are always willing to pass on knowledge and skills, and now I’m finding I am doing the same thing myself.”