Horticulture (Wales)

Framework status: Current (latest) issue

Framework details

Framework ID: FR03236
Issue number: 3
Issued: 30 January 2015

Download framework

Horticulture (Wales)
(PDF document 3.28 MB)

Issued by

Contact name: Sandie Absolam
Telephone number: 02476 696996
Please download the framework for email contact information.


Defining Apprenticeships

An Apprenticeship is a job with an accompanying skills development programme under an Apprenticeship Agreement designed by employers in the sector. It allows the apprentice to gain technical knowledge and real practical experience, along with essential skills, required for their immediate job and future career. These are acquired through a mix of learning in the workplace, formal off the job training and the opportunity to practice and embed new skills in a real work context. This broader mix differentiates the Apprenticeship experience from training delivered to meet narrowly focused job needs.

All apprentices commencing their Apprenticeship must have an Apprenticeship Agreement between the employer and the apprentice. This can be used to reinforce the understanding of the requirements of the Apprenticeship.

On completion of the Apprenticeship the apprentice must be able to undertake the full range of duties, in the range of circumstances appropriate to the job, confidently and competently to the standard set by the industry.

The Horticulture Industry

Horticulture is a broad and varied industry that can be split into four main areas and involves many different aspects of working with and maintaining the land, for pleasure, leisure and food.

  1. Landscaping comprising of many different types of business and employment, including both the public and private sectors. Businesses range from small contracting firms to large integrated, multi-national companies and local authorities.
  2. Production horticulture comprises of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) many of which are family run. This typically includes businesses producing fruit, vegetables, protected crops, plants, flowers, bulbs, nursery stock and trees.
  3. Sports turf and golf greenkeeping involves managing and maintaining sports turf/grounds that are to be used for sport but need to meet specific requirements. Typically they are small industries and may even be part of a larger organisation.
  4. Parks, gardens and green space are made up of local authority parks and greenspace, private gardens, heritage and botanic gardens.

Recent research by Lantra in 2013 found that micro-businesses dominate the land-based and environmental sector with 85% of horticulture businesses in Wales employing fewer than ten members of staff.  In Wales, Horticulture represents 10% (1,740) of businesses and 8% of employment making it the fourth most important sector for employment.

The Horticulture industry has an ageing workforce in Wales and key decision makers are often over the age of 55 and do not have successors. On the other hand, there are only 12% of workers in the 16-24 age band across all industries in Wales, demonstrating the need for younger new entrants.  Therefore the revised Foundation Apprenticeship and Apprenticeship aim to encourage younger entrants into the Horticulture industry by offering progression opportunities to ensure the future of the skills and knowledge within the industry.

The Horticulture industry in Wales values the Apprenticeship as an entry route into the sector and Lantra continue to work with the Welsh providers and employers to establish shared training to encourage the uptake of Apprenticeships within Wales.

The framework will also contribute to meeting the skills priorities in Wales by:

  • Providing flexible access to a high quality (Foundation Apprenticeship, Apprenticeship and Higher Apprenticeship) skills programme for Horticulture
  • Incorporating skills to improve the levels of general literacy and numeracy in Wales
  • Using technical and competence qualifications, valued by employers, to help their businesses grow
  • Developing apprentices’ employability skills, making them more attractive to all employers whatever career they choose
  • Providing a career pathway into jobs and training at intermediate and higher levels, to provide the skills which the economy needs to grow.

It is the view of the Horticulture industry in Wales that because of the nature of their business, work-based learning through Apprenticeships is a good way for apprentices to learn the necessary skills required to work in a practical environment. These industries and trade associations were involved in revising/developing the Foundation Apprenticeship, Apprenticeship and Higher Apprenticeship frameworks and this important entry mechanism has therefore been highlighted in the Horticulture Industry Action Plan, which states the need to prioritise and increase the awareness and uptake of the Horticulture Apprenticeship.

  • Job Roles at Level 2 may include: Gardener, Landscaper, Nursery Worker, Fruit and Vegetable Production Worker, Machinery Operator, Greenkeeper, Groundsman.
  • Job Roles at Level 3 may include: Horticultural Technician, Deputy Head Greenkeeper, Deputy Head Groundsman, Garden Designer, Senior Gardener, Gardener (Historic and Botanic), Parks Officer. 
  • Job Roles at Level 4 may include: Golf Course Manager, Head Gardener, Nursery Manager, Production Manager, Landscape Manager.

 Further information on the Horticulture industry can be found at: www.lantra.co.uk.

Download framework

Horticulture (Wales)
(PDF document 3.28 MB)