Level 3 Landscape/Horticulture Supervisor

WCG Horticulture Apprenticeship

Apprenticeship Role Profile

Horticulture and Landscape Supervisor Apprentices can be employed to oversee work in public parks and gardens, green spaces and historic gardens, private gardens and estates or in production nurseries and retail outlets. Many businesses will specialise in their activities, such as grounds maintenance, soft landscaping or landscape construction.

  • Soft landscaping includes the establishment and maintenance of plants and cultivated areas.
  • Hard landscaping includes the establishment of hard surfaces and structures in addition to the establishment of plants in cultivated areas.

The distinct nature of these two specialisms means very few businesses can offer the full breadth of skills and therefore two options are available for this occupation: horticulture and landscape construction. The employment area will dictate the option pursued. The horticulture option focuses on plant propagation and plant growth. The landscape construction option focuses on the installation of features and structures; application of landscape materials as well as site management.

At 4th Corner, we offer apprentices the horticulture option.

A Horticulture/Landscape Supervisor can manage a site with minimum supervision, supervise a team and maintain the health and safety of personnel and resources.

Delivery Site: Pershore College

Start Date: October 2023

Delivery Mode: Ten Master class days per year for applicants with prior Level 2 Horticulture Qualification.

Programme Length

Typically the programme spans 36 months (3 years) for new entrants with no prior experience. In this situation, the candidate would attend the 6 x 1 week college block weeks to complete the Level 2 programme, plus the 10 college-based masterclass days to complete the Level 3 element of the course.

Typically the programme spans 12 months (1 year) for entrants with a Level 2 Horticulture/Landscape Operative Qualification. As the Level 3 programme is tailored to the requirements of each candidate, numbers of block weeks and masterclasses will vary from one individual to another.

What Qualifications will I Achieve?

Upon completion of all elements of your apprenticeship, you will be awarded a Level 3 Advanced Apprenticeship in Horticulture as well as Level 3 Emergency First Aid at Work and The Safe Use of Pesticides (PA1).

What are the Entry Requirements?

As a minimum you should have a level 4 in Maths and English Language GCSE. Alternatively, you should have achieved a grade C under the old grading system OR a Level 2 in functional skills or alternative qualification.

As a Horticulture/Landscape Supervisor, you should be able to manage a site with minimum supervision, supervise a team and maintain the health and safety and security of personnel and resources.

How will I be assessed?

You will be required to build a portfolio of work and undertake a range of practical activities within the workplace. This is in preparation for your End-Point Assessment (EPA), which will consist of:

  • Online knowledge assessment meeting the knowledge requirements of the standard.
  • A synoptic practical assessment containing a range of practical activities (with verbal questioning).
  • Professional discussion.
  • Supervisory Studies Project.

These are graded:

  • Fail
  • Pass (60-79%)
  • Distinction (80-100%)

If you do not possess the necessary levels of Maths or English language prior to your application being submitted, you will need to undertake screening to determine whether you will be able to achieve these as part of your apprenticeship.

What is the Entry Process?

We advertise our apprenticeship vacancies on the National Apprenticeship Service website. Applicants will be invited for a pre-interview with a member of the WCG team to gather some background information and discuss the apprenticeship role in more detail. Suitable candidates will then be forwarded to the employer for shortlisting.

Alternatively, you can contact 4th Corner directly by emailing us at info@4thcorner.co.uk or calling 01295 817628 and asking to speak to our HR team.

What Careers can this Lead to?

Previous 4th Corner apprentices have become Senior Team Leaders and Head of Soft Landscaping after completing this Level 3 course.

We offer all of our apprentices further training and career progression within our business.

Modules Covered

knowledge, Skills and Behaviours in Horticulture covering:

  • Industry understanding; the importance and benefits of green-space and different types of horticultural management appropriate to different sites.
  • Business; project processes, planning work scheduling and requirements to meet specification, working to a budget. Business operations and the impact of decisions, individual and team performance on commercial success. Have an awareness of the commercial environment including competitors and suppliers.
  • Communication; the importance of clear and unambiguous communication appropriate to different audiences. The application of different forms of communication aids and their use.
  • Customer care; how to identify client/customer, understanding their needs and facilitating relations to progress business success. Managing teams to deliver customer service. The impact of customer care on the organisation.
  • Supervision; how to communicate with a team and provide work instructions. How to manage a team’s performance and provide feedback to team members and managers. Utilising communication and an understanding of people to work collaboratively and increase productivity and safety.
  • Health and safety; obligations for managing safely; health, safety, quality, environmental (HSQE) and welfare issues within a business and on site. Knowing how to identify potential hazards and manage the risks to fully comply with legislation and industry practice.
  • Environmental; waste hazards and waste reduction/recycling and environmental best practice. Impact of horticultural management on the environment. Protection of the environment in each particular task.
  • Plant growth and development; plant nutrition and plant requirements. The principles of germination, photosynthesis, respiration and transpiration (the science of growth). How to manage plants correctly in different environments. The relationship between environmental conditions and plant growth and associated management.
  • Tools, equipment and machinery; safe and correct operation and maintenance of tools and equipment commonly used in horticulture e.g. hand held, pedestrian and ride on in order to supervise work teams. Knowledge of requirements for purchase, hire or lease of such equipment and appropriate instruction to workers before use.
  • Vegetation control; vegetation and methods of site clearance and removal of vegetation.
  • Biosecurity; identification, prevention and control measures for pests and diseases on work sites. The identification and control of invasive alien species through supervision work methods. Reporting procedures.
  • Plant identification and classification; plant identification by scientific names including genus, species and cultivar. Knowing why and how plants are identified. Know if plants are incorrectly labelled and how to use reference material to confirm identification.
  • Soils & growing media; soils, growing media, compost and mulches and their management and assessment.
  • Plant health; pest & disease identification/symptoms and control methods required on horticultural sites.
  • Protection of biodiversity and heritage: habitat and historic value of horticultural sites, awareness of protected species and landscapes and procedures to follow.
  • Assess, repair and maintain hard structures; daily management of hard structures, hazards associated with failure / damage and maintenance regimes.

Additional Skills for Sector:

  • Business; to include supervising a project including project processes, planning and specification.
  • Customer care; to include managing client’s expectations and requirements
  • Team working; apply effective time management, resource management and support effective team working.
  • People management; undertake team management and motivation, work prioritisation, problem-solving and resource deployment within a team.
  • Health and safety; implement and maintain a positive safety culture within a team, understand and implement safe systems of work and comply with relevant legislation.
  • Plant growth and development; care for plants correctly in different environments, including irrigation, nutrition, pruning and identifying plant deficiencies.
  • Tools, equipment and machinery; carry out selection appraisals. Ability to instruct operatives on correct techniques/tool use. Responsibility for tools, equipment and machinery on site.
  • Vegetation control; supervise processes and methods of site clearance, tools and machinery for pruning and vegetation control.
  • Soils; cultivate and improve soils by mechanical methods and by hand. Analyse soil-related problems and implement corrective management regimes.
  • Plant health; identify and respond to threats to plant health.
  • Assess and maintain hard structures; supervise the maintenance of structures relevant to the business activities and context of the site e.g. historic or environmental designations. Understand manufacturers recommended inspection regimes.
  • Site presentation; develop a work plan to achieve a specified outcome.
  • Tree safety; identify basic tree health threats and hazards.

For the Horticulture Option:

  • Apply the correct pruning and training techniques for a range of plants.
  • Choose appropriate growing media e.g. compost, soil.
  • Plan and implement propagation using a variety of methods e.g. cuttings, seed, division Supervise the maintenance, renovation and installation of ornamental turf areas.
  • Supervise the cultivation and maintenance of soft landscape elements e.g. trees, shrubs, herbaceous and bedding.
  • Develop maintenance programmes for horticultural sites.
  • Schedule work to protect features present such as irrigation, turf and aquatic environments.
  • Using and maintaining a range of irrigation systems e.g. drip, sprinkler and rotary systems to ensure accurate and timely water application.

In addition to the above, apprentices will also need to achieve:

  • Level 3 Emergency First Aid at Work
  • The Safe Use of Pesticides (PA1)

Apprentices without Level 2 English and Maths will need to achieve these prior to enrolment or taking the end point.

For more information about the course, visit the WCG Website.