Cacti And Succulent Culture

Course CodeVHT108
Fee CodeS2
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment

Explore different cacti and succulent plants

People often consider these plants to be similar.  Despite these and other similarities though; cacti and succulents vary greatly both in where they come from; and how they should be treated in the garden. It can be a serious mistake to simply assume they are all hardy, drought tolerant, and don't need watering.

  • Become an expert at identifying cacti and succulents
  • Learn how to grow succulents and cacti
  • Deepen your understanding and extend your vision of where and how to use them. 


Lesson Structure

There are 8 lessons in this course:

  1. Introduction
    • Review of the system of plant identification
    • Physiology
    • Information sources
    • Three Cacti tribes -Perskia, Opuntia, Cerus
    • Main succulent genera
    • Pronouncing Names
  2. Culture A.
    • Planting
    • Staking
    • Mulching
    • Soils
    • Feeding
    • Pruning etc.
  3. Propagation
    • Methods of propagating cacti & succulent plants
    • Propagation of selected varieties
    • Seed, Cuttings, Grafting
  4. Using Cacti & Succulents
    • Edible succulents
    • Garden Design
    • Garden Styles
    • Mexican gardens
    • Using Colour
    • Rock Gardens
    • Growing Cacti or Succulents in containers
  5. Culture B.
    • Pest & Disease
    • Irrigation
    • Greenhouse growing
  6. Cacti developing your plant knowledge.
    • General guidelines for growing cacti
    • Review of Cacti Genera
    • Zygocactus -featured plant
  7. Succulents developing your plant knowledge.
    • Review of Succulent Families
    • Bromeliads -featured plants
    • Kalanchoe
    • Sansavieria
  8. Special Project
    • PBL - Plan the establishment of a collection of different cultivars of either Cacti OR Succulents suited to growing in a specified locality.


  • Develop knowledge of botanical naming conventions and their application in understanding the horticultural potential of cacti and succulents.
  • Evaluate needs then select or improvie growing media for cacti and succulents
  • Propagate different types of cacti and succulents
  • Explain a range of uses for cacti and succulents
  • Manage growing conditions for cacti and succulents
  • Explain the cultivation of a range of cacti.
  • Explain the cultivation of a range of succulents.

Where to Grow Cacti and Succulents
Cacti and succulents are often thought of as desert plants, to be grown in dry, hot places. This may be true for many species, but it is an over generalisation to say this. There is a lot of variation amongst these plants; and the possibilities for how they might be grown should not be predetermined by any thought of them just being plants to grow where nothing else will grow.

Cacti and Succulents can be grown as container plants or in the ground. Many are happy to be grown as epiphytes where soil is scarce (eg. in a rock crevice or the niche of a wall, in a hanging basket or the fork of a tree). You can mix appropriate cultivars with other plants. Many succulents make stunning borders to garden beds, ground covers under trees or in the open. A lot of these plants are quite large and have very different architectural forms, making them ideal as a feature plant, to create a contracting affect against a wall, fence or background of shrubs.

The variation in flower and foliage colour of these plants offers an opportunity to create a huge diversity of colour affects in a garden.

Study this course and open your eyes to cultivars and applications you may not have even considered in the past.



Who Will Benefit From This Course?

  • Enthusiasts
  • Those looking to set up a xeriscape garden
  • Landscapers and garden designers
  • Those interested in propagating and selling these plants
  • Those already working in this field but wanting more knowledge


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