Adult Education

Garden Education Certificate Programs


To reach the main listing of Adult Education classes, use the searchable Calendar link to your right, visit our Courses and Catalog page, request a mailed copy of the current course catalog, or request a hard copy of the catalog be mailed to you by clicking here.

Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden offers Garden Education Certificates. These are directed to the dedicated amateur and are designed to guide participants through a course of study in a logical sequence of learning.The three areas of concentration are Home Landscape, Floral Design, and Botanical Illustration NOTE: The NEW program mission and requirements are now available.  Click on "Botanical Illustration," below to see the requirements.  To earn a Garden Education Certificate, students must complete from 59 to 94 contact hours of instruction at the Garden, depending on the area chosen. There are some basic required courses for each area of study, and remaining hours are completed from an elective selection of courses that vary from season to season.

This program does not offer college credit; it is designed for personal enrichment.
For more information, download a printer-friendly description of the series objectives for each of the three areas here: Home Landscape, Floral Design, Botanical Illustration and a registration form here or by emailing the Adult Education Coordinator or calling 804-262-9887 ext. 328 (M-F, 9 am – 5 pm).

home landscape Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden
Home Landscape

The Garden Education Certificate in HOME LANDSCAPE is designed to provide a thorough foundation in garden planning, design, and plant selection, installation, and care for the dedicated home gardener. Completion of this course provides new gardeners the opportunity to build gardening knowledge and skills. For seasoned gardeners, the program provides the opportunity to expand knowledge, challenge old habits, and expand new perspectives.

Floral Design

The Garden Education Certificate in FLORAL DESIGN is designed to provide a thorough foundation in the art of floral design for the amateur. Completion of this course provides novices the basic background to pursue the art of floral design.

Studies leading to the Certificate will enhance the experience of the dedicated amateur and professionals who may use floral design in their field, such as interior designers and caterers. Courses are continuously updated to include current information and practical tips. Courses on growing flowers and the handling and preparation of floral materials are included to encourage home gardeners.

Botanical Illustration

The Garden Education Certificate in BOTANICAL ILLUSTRATION is designed to provide a certification of competence in the classical approaches and disciplines of botanical illustration.  Certificate holders must demonstrate their competence in drawing and painting plants in a technically detailed manner.  Drawing on the Garden’s mission to engage people with the natural world and the examples in the Garden’s collection of significant botanical paintings by A. Descubes, and the Imperial Edition of Reichenbachia:  Orchids Illustrated and Described, emphasis is placed on proper set-up of live specimens, accurate drawing, correct depiction of tone and value, and on work in the traditional media of pen and ink and watercolor.  For the home gardener, the certificate’s emphasis on botanical accuracy will enhance observational skills in the garden.  For the serious artist, the curriculum will enhance technical and observational skills. For a listing of certificate courses and requirements, download the program brochure here, or email

Enrollment in the certificate program is not required to take courses in the Botanical Illustration curriculum, but non-certificate students wishing to enroll in courses above the beginning level must be pre-approved by the instructor before enrollment. 

Not interested in this formal Botanical Illustration track?  Check out Art in the Garden for a variety of classes to enhance your understanding and appreciation for the natural world, learn new skills, and enjoy the company of like-minded artists!


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