Introduction to Horticulture and Permaculture

This course comprises of nationally accredited units.

Gardener planting a tomato seedling in an organic garden.
Nationally Recognised Training

Course details

This 15-week course will be offered on the following dates in 2023:

Thursdays, 9 February – 25 May or
Tuesdays 23 May – 12 September or
Thursdays 24 August – 7 December

If you’re interested in finding out details about this course, please contact Karen Mengell, VET Co-ordinator on 9389 0127 or via the button below.

CERES welcomes applications from people with disabilities.

Full fee: $923

This course is designed as a taster for those who are unsure as to whether accredited training is for them, or whether horticulture and/or permaculture is the right pathway, or who are simply not able to commit to a full course at this stage.

The units offered have been selected from the Certificate II in Horticulture and Certificate II in Permaculture which are nationally recognised qualifications from the AHC Agriculture, Horticulture, Conservation and Land Management Training Package. Completing these units in our 4.5-hectare urban farm here at CERES Community Environment Park provides students with a range of skills and knowledge that are transferable to further study or a career in horticulture and/or permaculture.

Course Design

This CERES taster course offers three units*

In 2023 we have scheduled three courses of 15 sessions to be delivered on-site*:

  • Course One, Thursdays 09 February to 25 May 2023 10-3pm (no class 13 April)
  • Course Two, Tuesdays 23 May to 12 September 2023, 10-3pm (no class 27 June, 04 July)
  • Course Three, Thursdays 24 August to 07 December 2023, 10-3pm (no class 28 September)

*Please note all courses may be subject to change should government restrictions be imposed.

There is a maximum of 15 places per class available in this program.

Course delivery includes a range of activities and methodologies including:

  • Practical demonstration and hands-on learning
  • Class discussion
  • Use of a range of written materials
  • Individual and group work

Students are advised that in addition to class time the course may require some additional hours of independent learning.
Work placement is not a formal requirement, however students will be working alongside a range of social enterprises at CERES including our Honey Lane organic market garden, propagation area, permaculture and bushfood nursery.

Student Resources

CERES will provide all course written and gardening related learning resources. Students are required to provide and wear appropriate attire for working outdoors including safety boots, gloves, hi-viz and sun protection.


Assessment will be conducted in line with the Training Package’s requirements and will be through a range of practical demonstrations and some written assignments.
Students who successfully complete all 3 units will be issued with formal Statements of Attainment in recognition of partial completion.

Course Pre-requisites

Whilst there are no formal pre-requisites, prospective students should have:

    • Language, literacy and numeracy skills at a sufficient level to participate
    • A commitment to attending all classes and undertaking all course requirements.

Abigail Jabines has volunteered and worked for the horticulture industry in different capacities and work environments. She started as a volunteer propagator at CERES in 2015 before studying horticulture. After studying, she became a horticulturist for a hydroponics company. Abi started working at CERES in 2019. She enjoys encouraging people from different backgrounds, especially women and young people, to work with plants and help improve the connection between people and our natural environment.

On successful completion graduates may wish to enrol in qualifications such as a Certificate III in Horticulture (AHC30716), Certificate III in Landscape Construction (AHC30916) Certificate III in Parks and Gardens (AHC31016).

Those wanting to continue accredited training in Permaculture may wish to consider the Permaculture Demonstrator Skill Set (AHCSS00048) or the full Certificate III Permaculture (AHC33816).

2023 full-fee breakdown:

Tuition: $830
Amenities: $46
Materials: $47

Total: $923

Applicants are asked to contact Karen Mengell, VET Co-ordinator on 9389 0127 or via email at

CERES welcomes applications from those with disabilities. It is important to us that our students receive training, assessment and support services that meet their individual needs where appropriate. As part of this commitment, and in line with our access and equity policy, all applicants will be interviewed by the VET Coordinator prior to enrolment to determine needs.

CERES is the registered training organisation offering this training – RTO no 3686. CERES School of Nature and Climate is the trading name of CERES Inc.

Read the full RTO fees and refund policy here.

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