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Landscape Horticulture: Apprenticeship


Horticulture Apprenticeship links learning and employment by providing apprentices the opportunity to further their education, while maintaining full-time employment in the horticulture industry. An apprenticeship is established when an employer and employee complete, sign and register an apprentice and sponsor registration form with the Industry Training Authority (ITA). Apprentices may also apply to the ITA for work based training completed before the apprenticeship was established. Refer to for information.

The apprentice must complete four technical training levels. During each level, Apprentices attend a six-week technical training session for theoretical and practical instruction at the Langley Campus of KPU. The first two levels of the program focus on fundamental horticulture skills and knowledge. Subjects relevant to landscape horticulture operations are the focus in levels three and four.

The curriculum used for technical training has been developed and approved by the horticulture industry. It provides relevant, up-to-date information, and is based on recent technological advances in the horticulture field. Typically one level is completed each year but the opportunity exists to complete multiple levels in a single year depending on apprentice/student interest and the technical training schedule. Landscape Horticulture is a Red Seal Trade which signifies national recognition.

Journeypersons in landscape horticulture are in demand. Municipal parks departments, golf courses, landscape contractors, and cemeteries often list a journeyperson certification as a minimum requirement when hiring horticulturists.


In addition to applicable tuition fees, students require the following:

  • textbooks (purchased at the beginning of Level 1, 3, and 4)
  • school supplies
  • safety footwear (in conformance with WorkSafeBC regulations)
  • rain gear
  • field trips
  • travel
  • accommodation and food

Training Schedules

KPU apprentice training schedules and waitlists are published on Kwantlen Course Search.  Additional apprenticeship training opportunities are listed on Trades Training BC; this is the hub for BC's Public Trades Training Programs & Services.

Financial Supports for Apprentices

Apprentices may be eligible for financial support for the in-class portion of their training through the EPBC Apprentice Program Financial Supports. Application to this program must be made four to six weeks prior to the start of technical training. Information is available through WorkBC.

Apprentices must apply separately for Employment Insurance (EI) Benefits no later than the last week of work, or during the first week of training, or they will not be eligible to receive EPBC Apprentice Program Financial Supports. EI information can be obtained by visiting Service Canada.

The Canada Apprentice Loan is an initiative of the Government of Canada. As of January 2015, apprentices can apply for up to $4,000 in interest-free loans per period of in-school technical training. Information is available at the Canada Apprentice Loan Service Centre.

Transfer from Horticulture Foundation Programs

Graduates of Horticulture Foundation programs receive credit for Levels 1 and 2 of the technical training.

Transfer to a Diploma Program

Horticulture apprentices who complete Levels 1 and 2 will receive some credits if they choose to transfer to our Horticulture diploma program. Horticulture journeypersons (Certificate of Qualification) can continue their education in a Horticulture diploma program. Depending on the diploma specialty selected, journeypersons also receive some transfer credits. Journeypersons or apprentices are required to meet KPU's English entrance requirements to enter the diploma program.

Student Profile

Students interested in the apprenticeship should have a strong desire for hands-on outdoor work, enjoy nature and living things, be concerned about the environment, and have entrepreneurial talents. Individuals with allergies to dust, pollen or plant products, or specific chemicals should be aware of the potential impact on their health. Physical fitness and a healthy back are generally required for a successful career in horticulture. Apprentices may work with plant protection products.

Apprentices in the practical Horticulture Apprenticeship program typically come from a number of horticulture enterprises. For example, they may be working for greenhouse owners, tree removal and maintenance companies, nurseries, golf courses, municipal parks, school boards or landscape maintenance/installation companies.

General Prerequisites

The following requirements apply:

  • Completed KPU Apprentice Registration
  • Active apprentice registration in the BC Apprenticeship system.
  • Valid Trade Worker Identification number from the Industry Training Authority (ITA-ID). If you do not have an ITA-ID, you will need to complete an apprenticeship registration form through the ITA ( prior to enrolling (Level 1 through to 4). To determine your eligibility please consult with the Industry Training Authority.

Note: International student enrolment requires approval of the Dean.

Curricular Requirements

This program is designed to produce journeypersons with good theoretical and practical training, and experience in the horticulture industry.

Level 1 and Level 2 have the same requirements for both the Landscape Horticulture Apprentice and the Production Horticulture Apprentice. Level 3 and 4 are specialized to each apprenticeship.

Note: KPU Tech does not permit students to register in Apprenticeship Levels out of sequence.

Horticulture Apprentice Level 1 (AHCC 1010)

  • Plant Materials I 
  • Supervisory Skills
  • Equipment Maintenance
  • Plant Science - Morphology
  • Plant Health - Signs/Symptoms
  • Soil Physical Properties
  • Horticulture Practices I
  • Level I Final Exam

Horticulture Apprentice Level 2 (AHCC 1020)

  • Plant Materials II
  • Supervisory Skills
  • Equipment Maintenance II
  • Plant Science - Physiology
  • Plant Health - Pests, Diseases
  • Soil Chemical Properties
  • Horticulture Practices II
  • Level II Final Exam

Landscape Horticulture Apprentice Level 3 (AHLN 1030)

  • Plant Materials III
  • Plant Health - Pest Management
  • Soil Management in the Landscape
  • Plant Care - Pruning
  • Irrigation, Drainage, Installation, & Maintenance
  • Landscape Construction
  • Level III Final Exam

Landscape Horticulture Apprentice Level 4 (AHLN 1040)

  • Plant Materials IV
  • Plant Health - IPM programs
  • Plant Care - Cultural Operations
  • Soft Landscape Installation
  • Landscape Estimating
  • Garden Design Principles
  • Turf Maintenance Scheduling
  • Preparation for Red Seal
  • Red Seal Exam

Credential Awarded

Upon successful completion of an apprentice level, KPU will report your technical training completion information to the Industry Trade Authority (ITA) in order for the ITA to determine credit towards your designated apprenticeship.

At a Glance

Faculty of Science and Horticulture


Program Type:

  • Vocational

Credential Granted:

  • No Credential

Offered At:

  • KPU Langley  Langley

Start Date(s):

  • Intake Start Varies  Varies

Intake Type:

  • Open Intake  Apprenticeship


  • Full-time  Full-time

Instructional Cycle:

  • Fixed-term

Curriculum Effective Date:

  • 01-Sep-2011

How to Register:

Last Updated: 13-Jun-2018

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