Length of Program:  Certificate +1 YearProgram Intakes: Fall Intake (October program start)Fall 2019

Horticulture Technologist Diploma

"The program at Olds College tells you what you need to know and is a stepping stone to a successful horticulture career. It gave me the insight into the horticulture industry I needed to start planning my own business."

Tim Moreland, Class of 1998

Students gathering food during harvest

What can you expect from our program?

Sustainability, water management, production horticulture, and urban agriculture are vital elements of the world we live in. The Horticulture Technologist Diploma provides you with a deeper understanding of horticulture, including the production and management of plants, the management of pests, landscapes, soils and water systems to achieve productive and sustainable systems. You will get to take part in Field School, where you get to work with a company to put your studies into practice, and earn a wage while you learn.

What will you learn?

Building on the Horticulture Technician Certificate concepts,  you will learn about designing specialty landscapes, how to start a horticulture business and how to create entrepreneurial approach to processing plants. You will learn how to manage production of horticulture crops in response to market demands, as well as recognize the ecological, economic and social implications of horticulture decisions and processes.

View Program Details

Program at a glance

Credential: Diploma

Length of Program: 2 Years

Method of Delivery: On-Campus Delivery

Directed Field Study/Work Term/Practicum:  One 1-month Directed Field Study is completed at the beginning of the program

Program Intakes: Fall Intake (October program start)

Applications Open: October 1 for the Fall Intake

Selection Process for Admission: First Qualified, First Accepted

Tuition, Mandatory Fees, Books, and Supplies: Please refer to the current Fee Schedule for details

  • Tuition & Fees: $5,450 / Books & Supplies: $800

*These fees are provided as estimates only for the purposes of budgeting. Please note that all fees are best estimates and are subject to change.

International Students will require a Co-Op Work Permit as well as a Study Permit for this program

What do I need to apply?

Admission Requirements:

  • 50% or better in English Language Arts 30-1 or 30-2
  • 50% or better in Math 20-1 or 20-2
  • 50% or better in two of Biology 20, Chemistry 20, Science 20, OR One of Biology 30, Chemistry 30, Science 30
  • Meet the English Language Proficiency Requirement (completed at minimum 3 years of formal education taught entirely in English or provide the results of a recognized English Language Proficiency exam)

Academic Upgrading and High School Applicants: Applicants currently in high school or who are completing academic upgrading must submit proof of enrollment and any available interim/midterm marks. Final marks must be submitted within one month following the completion of the course(s) and no later than one month prior to the program start date.

Alternate Admission Option: Alternate Admission status may be offered to applicants who have not or will not complete one of the academic admission requirements. To be considered under Alternate Admission Status, applicants will be asked to provide the following:

  1. (Required) Transcript(s) showing any completed high school and post-secondary courses
  2. (Required) Letter of Introduction and Intent, outlining the following:
    • Introduce yourself
    • Indicate why you wish to enrol in the program
    • Elaborate on your career goals
    • Detail your experience relevant to this program and the industry
  3. (Required) A resume of your work history, extracurricular activities, volunteer service, etc. for the last 5 years
  4. (Optional) Include copies of any tickets and/or certificates you currently hold (e.g.: first aid, safety tickets, etc.)
  5. (Optional) Letter(s) of reference from current or past employers/coaches/etc. (maximum of two letters)

*Submitting Alternate Admission material does not guarantee admission*

Out of Province Applicants: Please refer to the Provincial Equivalency Chart for course equivalencies.

International Applicants: Olds College welcomes applications from international applicants and those who have completed their high school education outside of Canada. Please note, it is still necessary to meet all of the noted admission requirements, including English Language Proficiency. Further information can be found on our website under International Students.

Where can I live on campus?


CHOC is the exclusive service provider of on-campus housing for Olds College. Live in Centennial Village, our newest campus living facility featuring 450 private suites (no roommates), or in College Courts our 4-bedroom townhouses. Enjoy a short commute to class, partake in weekly residence life events and enjoy the safety of living on campus.

Learn More

I have some more questions. Who do I contact for help?

Our Admissions office can help navigate you through the admissions process and answer any questions you have about your program of study.



Admitted Students

Admitted Student Information

Program Dates: Find out when you term start and end dates are, so that you know when you are expected to be in attendance. For more information, please review the Program Dates & Fee Schedule.

Class Registration: You will be registered into your classes automatically. This will happen approximately 1 month prior to the start-date for your program. You will be notified once you have been timetabled into your courses. You will be able to see your class schedule in your My Olds College account. If you need to make any changes to your class registration, please contact the Office of the Registrar.

Technology Recommendation: It is strongly recommended that you come to Olds College with the following technology:

  • A laptop is preferred

As part of your student accounts, all students have access to Office 365 for the duration of their time with Olds College. To access this you just need to follow these steps.

  • Go to portal.office.com
  • Enter your Olds College email address and password
  • Once logged in there is a button on the right that says "Install Office Apps"

This will give you access to the full Office suite on your computer, for both Windows and Mac based platforms.


Materials & Supplies:

The following items are required to be purchased prior to the start of your program:

  • Steel-toed boots: CSA Standard, CSA-Z195-M92 (R2000) or CSA-Z195-02
  • Safety glasses: CSA-Z94.3-99 or CSA-Z94.3-02
  • Durable work gloves
  • Coveralls or similar work clothing

In addition, it is also suggested that you bring some of your own reference books on the identification and use of landscape plants (e.g. annuals, perennials, trees, and shrubs) and of landscape pests. There is also an extensive selection of materials available in the College library.

Information on other required textbooks and any further supplies will be provided as you attend each class. All books and supplies will be available during the first few weeks of classes in the College Campus Store.


Other Important Information:

  • Time Requirements: The programs are delivered in a “block” style with each course delivered in a block of 15 days and courses delivered one at a time in sequence. Within each course you will be attending class for 3 hours per day, Monday to Friday for three weeks. Classes are normally scheduled between 9 am and noon. In addition, you should anticipate several hours of additional study each afternoon and evening and on weekends.

    • In the Horticulture Technician Diploma there is one course that runs from January 1 to end of semester in late April.

    • Some courses may require or provide additional opportunities that involve evening/weekend classes or overnight field trips. You must be prepared to make the personal arrangements necessary to allow you to participate in the full range of classroom activities if you are to gain all the competencies required in each course. Notice of field trips will be given well in advance and it is your responsibility to participate. Off-campus events make up a valuable part of your training and further the development of essential skills. Times and duration of each off-campus event will vary but typically involve leaving and returning at times that are outside of normal class hours.

  • Student Clubs: The Horticulture Club is a group that offers an additional dimension to your Olds College experience. There are also a number of college sports teams, some of which participate at the inter-collegiate level while others are purely recreational.

  • Additional Skills: Basic computer skills are recommended for all and it is certainly beneficial to have some prior experience with computers before you arrive at the College. A familiarity and comfort in use of Google Docs, word processing, spreadsheet and e-mailing software will be a definite asset.

  • Lockers: All you need to do during your first few days at Olds is to select one without a lock and it’s yours for the duration. I strongly recommend that you select a locker in the first week of classes because of high demand. You are required to provide your own lock.