BHU

Year 1: Description

Principles of Organic Production

Students who complete this course are able to: demonstrate knowledge of planning requirements for establishment and maintenance of an organic horticultural production system; demonstrate knowledge of organic soil management; describe pest control in organic horticulture; demonstrate knowledge of factors that affect disease control in organic horticulture; demonstrate knowledge of weed management in organic horticulture; and demonstrate knowledge of companion planting in organic horticulture.

Liquid Fertilisers

This is a practical course where students will learn how to prepare and apply compost teas liquid fertilisers.

Vermiculture

Students learning how to recognise and encourage both earthworms and compost worms, build and maintain worm bins.

Composting

Students learn and practice the principles of hot composting, bokashi using effective microorganisms and how to use biodynamic compost reparations.

Plants

On completion of this course students will be able to describe the basic structure and function of plants and plant nutrition.

Soils

Students learn how to describe soil formation, basic biological, chemical and physical soil properties and how soil properties and organic fertilisers can be managed to optimise plant growth. Students will also be able to assess and modify soil using sustainable practices, manage organic matter and maintain long term fertility. The student will also undertake basic soil analysis and take samples for soil tests.

Planting and Sowing

Students will learn the principles of seed bed preparation, direct sowing and transplanting for a range of vegetable, green manure and cover crops grown at the BHU organic farm. Both hand and mechanical methods will be demonstrated. Students work as a group in the year 1 intensive gardens under the tuition of Bob Crowder. Produce is sold at the BHU weekly market on campus.

Shelter

The shelter course aims to provide students with the theory and practical knowledge to select, plant, prune and maintain healthy shelter trees. Students will practice hoe to plant, maintain and coppice the mixed species shelter plantings and Food Forest at the BHU.

Bees and Organics

This course is a mixture of theory and practical, looking at the basics of managing and maintaining a healthy hive organically as well as how to maximize the value and benefits of having bees in organic horticulture.

Permaculture

Students completing this course will be able to: describe the principles of permaculture; outline procedures used to analyse a site for permaculture; create a permaculture plan for a selected site; and describe considerations when implementing the permaculture plan. Students develop a plan using permaculture principles for a site of their choice.

The History and Development of Organic Horticulture

Students who complete this course are able to: describe the basic relationships and characteristics of an organic system; describe the development of modern organic horticulture; describe the schools of thought that are credited with the development of the modern organic horticulture movement; describe the principles of a selected range of organic movements; and describe the roles of key organisations that have a strong influence on organic horticulture.

Introduction to Pruning

This course will train students how to use hand pruning equipment, orchard ladders or stools, and maintain orchard equipment. Students will practice pruning techniques in the BHU orchards.

Planting to Retain Insects and Birds

This course looks at how to attract birds and other beneficial organisms, improve biodiversity and select and manage plant species with this in mind.

Tractors

Students learn basic tractor maintenance, how to attach implements and drive a tractor in a safe and controlled manner. Students are able to practice on one of two BHU tractors on the BHU farm under the tuition of experienced trainers.

 

Year 2: Description

Organic Standards and Certification

This course is taken by Dr Charles Merfield. By the end of this course students will be able to: explain the requirements for maintaining organic certification; identify how certification integrity may be endangered in organic horticulture operations; outline the requirements of an organic management plan for a horticultural operation to obtain organic certification and define key factors determining the viability of an organic horticulture venture.

Plant Propagation

On completion of this course students will be able to: manage stock plants; select and prepare cutting material; manage the propagating environment; harden off rooted cuttings; and keep records of propagation by cuttings; source and store seed; treat seed to enhance germination; produce seedling lines; and keep records of propagation from seed. This course runs over 19 weeks wiht two tutors working together to gover students a very thorough undersatnding of propagation from seed and cuttings.

Organic Crop Production (inc irrigation)

This course is taken by Dr Tm jenkins. Students completing this course are able to: demonstrate knowledge of the criteria for selection of an organically produced crop; use site data to plan and implement a soil and fertility management programme; identify pests and diseases associated with the selected crop, and plan for and carry out the management of these organisms using organic methods; and identify weeds that will negatively affect crop development and plan for weed management in the selected crop.

Irrigation

This is a practically orintated course where students build and maintaint their own irrigation systems, montier soil moisture levels and budget for irrigatio applications.

Legal Issues 

This course is designed for people working, or intending to work, in horticulture. Students will be able to: describe business ownership structures; describe basic legal requirements in buying and leasing real estate; state how to comply with Inland Revenue Department (IRD) requirements; and demonstrate knowledge of the legal obligations of an employer and employee.

The topics covered in this course also include the restrictions on land and water use by primary producers; and water quality, and ground and surface movement problems associated with agricultural and horticultural land use.

Soil Managemnet

This course covers the sustainable management of soils and the issues related to the maintenance of this resource; erosion, cultivation and intensive agricultural use.

Pruning

This course will use the BHU pip fruit, stone fruit and connoisseur orchards to learn the practical skills required for the training and pruning of fruit tree crops. Students spend nine days learning how to prune, the course includes field trips to practice the pruning of grapes, nut crops and export organic apples.

Composting

Students learn and practice the principles of hot composting, bokashi using effective microorganisms and how to use biodynamic compost reparations.

The History and Development of Organic Horticulture

Students who complete this course are able to: describe the basic relationships and characteristics of an organic system; describe the development of modern organic horticulture; describe the schools of thought that are credited with the organic movement.

Farm Fencing

This is a practically orientated course that teaches students how to repair broken posts, construct fences, end assemblies for horticulture and hang gates.

 

Organic Distance Programme: Description

This is a part time qualification. Students have one year to complete the qualification from the date of enrolment.

 

Corse courses (complete all of the following)

  • Foundations of Organic Horticulture
  • Composting
  • Soils in Organic Horticulture
  • Permaculture in Organic Horticulture
  • Natural Shelter

Electives (choose 1 of the following)

  • Plan plantings for insect and bird retention
  • Structure and Growth of Plants

Practical component

The programme includes a five day block course held at the Biological Husbandry Unit, Lincoln University.

The block courses will be held annually in April and November.

Please contact the BHU for course details and enrollment information.

Download the enrolment form here or contact the distance co-coordinator for further information: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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