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How does someone become an expert on Gardening, get certified and make it a career?

I am interested in turning my small time hobby of gardening into a bit of a career. Are there classes, certifications, training that I can take in order to become an expert on plants, trees, etc? I'd like to have a deep knowledge of the various kinds of trees, shrubs, flowers that work in different climates, how to best plant and maintain them, to design landscapes with a variety of well-coordinated plants, etc. Should I try to become a certified arborist? Where do I start exploring this potential new career direction? Thanks.

Asked By: HereAndThere - 3/19/2007
Best Answer - Chosen by Asker
If you are serious about doing this I would advise taking a college course - either a bachelors degree or an associates degree in horticulture. As a professional horticulturist I have to admit that my co-workers and I tend to see Master Gardener programs & such as more for amateurs - whether this is valid of not is... More
Answered By: SonoranDesertGirl - 3/19/2007
Additional Answers (4)
There's 2 ways you can go. Start by taking the Master Gardener course form your local co-operative extension, then apply for jobs and gain experience that way... More
Answered By: Kacky - 3/19/2007
 
If you are comfortable with distance learning, this program is absolutely fantastic: http://www.landscape-designer.co.nz/index.htm... More
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Answered By: PunkVader - 3/19/2007
 
Yeah there are. Normally it is referred to as landscape architecture or landscaping design. Normally, for a degree such as that it is good to check out your agricultural schools. Purdue University has a very good landscaping program... More
Answered By: devilishblueyes - 3/19/2007
 
go to a college offering Horticultural certificates.
Answered By: cactusone - 3/19/2007
 
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