2012-2013 Student Catalog 
    Jul 12, 2024  
2012-2013 Student Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Horticulture, Certificate

Contact Information

Program Requirements

Typical Program

Degree/Certificate:   Certificate
HEGIS Code:            5402
SUNY Code:             1736
Major Code:             HORT

The Career

According to the latest research by the American Nursery and Landscape Association, U.S. households spent a record $28.9 billion on professional landscape/lawn care/tree care services! Spending on landscape installation, construction and design accounted for the largest increases. The National Agricultural Statistics Service reports that New York is the sixth-largest producer of nursery and greenhouse crops in the nation. The field of horticulture is continuing to grow and offers numerous career opportunities both nationally and in New York.

The NCCC Approach

NCCC’s Horticulture program combines classroom, greenhouse and field instruction in a certification program not matched elsewhere in Western New York. The certificate program offers a selection of courses permitting the student to customize their education to best meet their career goals.

Horticulturalists need to understand how plants grow and how to identify, propagate, install and maintain different types of plants including trees, shrubs, vines, herbaceous perennials, bedding plants and floral crops.  They also focus on environmental concerns and pest problems associated with plants and the landscape.  The NCCC Horticulture program is geared to help both the novice and the more experienced “plant person” gain the education and training necessary to obtain employment or advance their careers in the industry.  Graduates of the program are prepared for careers as landscape designers, landscape installation crew leaders, diagnosticians, floral designers, nursery salespeople, garden center managers, greenhouse production assistants, turf managers, grounds people and more.  Graduates may also choose to continue their education at a four-year college.

Coursework is based on real-world projects similar to those professionals encounter in the industry.  With both theory and practical hands-on experience, students are introduced to the techniques and processes of the industry using various formats, professional tools and equipment.  Emphasis is placed upon sustainable horticulture and landscape management with current research and best management practices integrated into the curriculum.  Field trips, externships and collaborative activities with trade associations provide students with educational and networking opportunities with the owners, managers and employees of local industry leaders.  Horticulture certificate graduates, who continue their education through the Individual Studies, AAS program, are also fully prepared for and eligible to take the New York State Certified Nursery and Landscape Professional exam.  Graduates may be prepared for other types of professional certification exams depending upon course selection.


Students are admitted in September and January.

The Horticulture certificate is offered as a full-time or part-time program. Because of the sequencing of courses, it may take more than one academic year of full-time study if a student begins this program in a spring semester.

See Individual Studies  for associate degree option.

Program Goals and Objectives

  • To provide students with an education in the basic principles of horticulture that will prepare them for employment in the industry.
  • To provide a horticulture-based pathway for successful student transition to an Individual Studies, AAS degree at NCCC.

Student Learning Outcomes

At the completion of the Horticulture certificate program, the student will:

  • Describe the basic principles of plant taxonomy, anatomy, morphology and physiology.
  • Describe the components and effects of environment and soils on plant growth and development.
  • Describe the techniques required for proper selection, installation and maintenance of plant materials.
  • Identify and manage common landscape and greenhouse pests and disorders in an environmentally safe and sustainable manner.
  • Describe the variety of careers available in the horticulture industry including the landscape, greenhouse, nursery, turf management areas as well as emerging career trends.

Program Requirements (HORT)

  1. A total of at least 30 credits hours with a minimum curriculum grade-point average of 2.0. Academic Foundations courses do not count toward the certificate.
  2. Horticulture: A minimum of 15 credit hours to include:
  3. Biology: A minimum of 6 credit hours to include:
  4. Horticulture  Electives:  A minimum of 9 credit hours selected through advisement.   A 3 credit business class, selected through advisement, may be taken in place of one 3 credit horticulture class.

Typical Program

Scholarship Opportunities

All matriculated students in this curriculum are eligible for scholarships. See scholarship  area of this catalog for specific information and criteria.