student taking notes in Perennial Garden

Certificate Program

On a new career path or thinking about a career change?

Think about upgrading your professional profile and actively pursing a prestigious NYBG Certificate. Develop new skills, contacts, and cross-disciplinary experience. Catch up with the latest industry changes. A NYBG Certificate is a serious credential that tells employers and clients that you’ve made a serious commitment to your professional development.

Want to jump on the fast track? Take advantage of an opportunity to really accelerate your progress in Floral Design, Botanical Art, Landscape Design, Horticultural Therapy, or Gardening by enrolling in one of our Summer Intensive Programs. You can complete up to half the requirements toward your Certificate in just a few weeks!

NYBG Certificate Programs Requirements

  1. The Botanical Art & Illustration requirements provide a solid foundation in scientifically accurate drawing based on observation and fine art techniques.

    Certificate students must complete 221 total course hours (167 required + 54 elective). Students are also required to submit a portfolio showcasing class assignments and their own unique creations to Program Coordinator Robin Jess at bilcoordinator@nybg.org.

    COURSES

    Botanical Drawing I: Methods and Materials

    Botanical Drawing II: Developing Your Skills

    The Basics of Visual Composition

    Botanical Drawing III: Focus on Flowers

    Plant Morphology for Botanical Artists

    Botanical Watercolor I

    Practical Aspects of Botanical Art

    Plus one of the following: 

    Internet Tools for Creatives, Part I: Social Media

    Internet Tools for Creatives, Part II: Website

    Pen and Ink

    Colored Pencil

    Elective courses

  2. The NYBG Landscape Design Certificate Program prepares students for creative careers as landscape designers. Licensed by the New York State Department of Education, the Certificate Program is recognized as high quality and career oriented.

    Certificate students must complete 349 total required course hours.

    COURSES

    TIER 1—INTRODUCTORY CLASSES

    Landscape Design History

    Graphics I

    Landscape Measurement

    Landscape Plants: Fall Trees and Shrubs

    Landscape Plants: Spring Trees and Shrubs

    Plants for Landscaping


    TIER 2

    Landscape Design I: Site Analysis & Schematic Design

    Landscape Design II: Design Development

    Estimating

    Graphics II

    Grading

    Site Materials and Details


    TIER 3

    Drainage

    Graphics III

    Landscape Design III: Planting Design

    Professional Practice for Landscape Designers

    Landscape Design IV: Design and Construction

    Portfolio and Presentation Skills

  3. The NYBG Horticultural Therapy Certificate Program helps students begin or complement their careers through an in-depth exploration of skills and innovative methods using plants and the growing environment to heal and rehabilitate people. Licensed by the New York State Department of Education, the Certificate Program is recognized as high quality and career oriented.

    Certificate students must complete 189 total course hours (181 required + 8 site visit hours), plus a 100-hour internship.

    COURSES

    Introduction to Horticultural Therapy

    Horticultural Therapy for Older Adults

    Horticultural Therapy for Exceptional Youth

    Horticultural Therapy for Physical Rehabilitation

    Horticultural Therapy in Behavioral Health Settings

    Horticultural Therapy Methods and Materials

    Activities Analysis for Horticultural Therapy

    Garden Design for Special Populations

    Horticultural Therapy Program Management

    Fundamentals of Gardening

    Introduction to Plant Science

    Plant Propagation I: Basic Principles

    Horticultural Therapy Site Visits

  4. The NYBG Floral Design Certificate Program helps you develop your own aesthetic and master the mechanics for everything from simple bouquets to grand-scale arrangements, while giving you a practical, real-world, business foundation.

    Certificate students must complete 152 total course hours (120 required + 32 elective), plus an 80-hour internship. Students are also required to submit a portfolio showcasing photographs of class assignments and their own unique creations.

    COURSES

    Fundamentals of Form

    Fundamentals of Style

    Wedding Design I: Personals

    Wedding Design II: Ceremony & Reception

    Color Theory for Floral Design

    Flower ID from A to Z

    Interior Plantscapes

    Shopping the New York Flower Market 

    Practical Planning for Designers

    Grand-Scale Arrangements

    Event Planning for the Floral Designer

    Elective courses

  5. The NYBG Gardening Certificate Program covers sustainable gardening techniques, soil science, plant propagation, and garden care and design.

    Certificate students must complete 187 total course hours (164 required + 23 elective).

    COURSES

    Fundamentals of Gardening

    Introduction to Plant Science

    Soil Science for Gardeners

    Gardening with Native Plants

    Insect Identification and Management

    Disease Identification and Management

    Fundamentals of Garden Design

    Vegetable Gardening

    Complete Garden Care and Maintenance

    Pruning Principles and Practices

    Plants for Landscaping

    Plant Propagation I: Basic Principles

    Elective GAR or HRT courses

  6. During the NYBG Botany Certificate Program, students will come to know plants: how they function, grow, develop, and reproduce; and learn to identify a wide array of plants by stems, leaves, flowers, and fruits.

    Certificate students must complete 169 total course hours (111 required + 58 elective).

    COURSES

    Plant Structure

    Plant Physiology

    Plant Diversity

    Dendrology: Woody Plant Identification

    Herbaceous Plant Identification

    One of the four Native Flora courses:

    Native Flora in Autumn

    Native Flora in Winter

    Native Flora in Spring

    Native Flora in Summer

    Elective courses

  7. The NYBG Horticulture Program blends classroom theory with field studies in the Garden’s historic landscape, teaching students how to form and care for healthy, sustainable landscapes. Licensed by the New York State Department of Education, the Certificate Program is recognized as high quality and career oriented.

    This program offers a high standard of training in four areas of concentration:

    TRACK 1: PLANT PRODUCTION

    Gain the skills to propagate and produce an array of native and non-native plants for nurseries, garden centers, and landscape-restoration projects.

    Certificate students must complete 160 total course hours.

    COURSES

    Introduction to Plant Science

    Soil Science I: Physical Properties

    Soil Science II: Chemistry and Nutrition

    Horticultural Techniques: Greenhouse Practices

    Insect Pests of Landscape Plants

    Plant Propagation I: Basic Principles

    Plant Propagation II: Applications

    Disease Identification & Management

    Nursery and Greenhouse Management


    TRACK 2: SUSTAINABLE LANDSCAPE MANAGEMENT

    Understand landscape maintenance and management practices using the concept “right plant—right place” in residential and commercial landscapes.

    Certificate students must complete 201 total course hours.

    COURSES

    Introduction to Plant Science

    Soil Science I: Physical Properties

    Soil Science II: Chemistry and Nutrition

    Horticultural Techniques: Landscape Gardening

    Pruning Principles and Practices

    Basic Design and Installation of Irrigation Systems

    Starting a Small Landscaping Business

    Tree Management

    Landscape Management

    Disease Identification & Management 

    Weed Identification & Management 

    Mathematics for Horticulturists


    TRACK 3: ARBORICULTURE

    Know how to grow, prune, care for, and manage trees in parks, residential sites, and urban environments.

    Certificate students must complete 192 total course hours.

    COURSES

    Introduction to Plant Science

    Soil Science I: Physical Properties

    Soil Science II: Chemistry and Nutrition

    Tree Climbing for Arborists

    Chainsaws: Use, Safety, and Maintenance

    Pruning Principles and Practices

    Landscape Plants: Fall Trees and Shrubs

    Landscape Plants: Conifers

    Landscape Plants: Spring Trees and Shrubs

    Insect Pests of Landscape Plants

    Tree Management

    Urban Tree Care

    Winter Tree Identification

    Disease Identification & Management


    TRACK 4: SUSTAINABLE GARDEN DESIGN

    Be able to design small-scale gardens for homes, communities, and private clients.

    Certificate students must complete 209 total course hours.

    COURSES

    Introduction to Plant Science

    Soil Science I: Physical Properties

    Landscape Plants: Broadleaved Evergreens

    Landscape Plants: Spring Trees and Shrubs

    Landscape Plants: Spring Perennials

    Landscape Plants: Summer and Fall Perennials

    Landscape Plants: Grasses

    Landscape Plants: Annuals

    Landscape Plants: Bulbs 

    Annual and Perennial Garden Maintenance 

    Plants for Landscaping

    Tropical Plants

    Sustainable Garden Design

    Landscape Design History

    Graphics I

  8. NYBG Urban Naturalists will learn to keenly observe the natural world using a variety of scientific tools. You’ll also create scientifically useful records—written, hand-drawn, and photographs—of your observations.

    TOTAL REQUIRED HOURS 96
    Elective Credits (See current electives below) 36

    CERTIFICATE REQUIREMENTS
    Introduction to Natural History
    Natural History of Birds
    Natural History of Insects**
    Urban Ecology Field Study Workshop**
    Two of the four Native Flora courses:
    Native Flora in Autumn
    Native Flora in Winter
    Native Flora in Spring**
    Native Flora in Summer**

    ELECTIVES
    Hawk Watch and Fall Migration
    Winter in the Bronx: Seals, Loons, and Owls
    Field Sketching
    Amphibians
    The Unseen World with Eugenia Bone
    Mannahatta and Beyond with Eric Sanderson
    Photographing Birds
    The Science of Tree Communication
    Autumn Mushrooms
    The Hidden World of Lichens
    Forest Ecology**

    **Courses offered in the Spring–Summer Catalog

    FIELD STUDY PROJECT
    In order to receive a Certificate, you must submit a final project is an in-depth study of a natural site of your choosing, which should be done based on observations made over many months. Your study will include the geology and human history of your patch, a survey of the plants and animals found there, and a plan for how the site can be improved to provide ecological and social benefits. Guidelines can be obtained from the Registration Office.

    In order to be considered for graduation, you must submit a project proposal for approval to Mike Feller, the Program Coordinator. If you would like to graduate in June 2019, the final project due date is April 26, 2019.

Adult Ed graduation ceremony 2016

Certificate Graduation Ceremony

The 2018 ceremony will be held on Sunday, June 3. If you expect to complete your Certificate requirements or enroll in all remaining classes by May 25, you must inform the Manager of Student Services in writing or by completing the Application for Graduation form by February 23. You will be informed if you are eligible for a Certificate by April 20.

Call the Registration Office at 718.817.8747 with any questions.