As a horticulturist, you will be using scientific knowledge for cultivation and propagation of plants and providing technical advice to farmers for growing fruits, vegetables and flowers and to landscape developers.

What do Horticulturists do?

Horticulturists conduct research in crop production, plant breeding and propagation, plant biochemistry, plant physiology and genetic engineering. They also conduct studies on pests and disease and experiment with improved and disease resistant varieties of plants. They may also work in the area of gardening and landscaping to design gardens, recreational areas, and parks in order to provide a pleasing environment and to conserve natural resources.

What does a typical day at work involve?

  • Checked Designing layouts for parks and botanical gardens
  • Checked Determining potential landscaping problems
  • Checked Overseeing the cultivation and planting of different types of crops, plants, shrubs, and turf
  • Checked Cultivating new plants through grafting and other measures, as well as prune plants and trees
  • Checked Visiting clients on site, identifying any technical problems and investigating its causes
  • Checked Delivering presentations on chemical and plant safety to interested groups and individuals
  • Checked Maintaining and repairing equipment, and overseeing the development of staff
  • Checked Visiting historical sites, researching old plans and documents, and planning of restoration programs
  • Checked Organizing presentations, technical visits and demonstrations for training purposes
  • Checked Maintaining necessary administrative records such as budgets and accounts

What job roles can a horticulturist take up?

A commercial horticulturist undertakes all aspects of operating and managing an orchard, vegetable farm or greenhouse including preparation, growing and harvesting, managing pest, disease and weed control programmes, marketing and wholesale or retail sale of fresh or processed fruits and vegetables, seeds, cut flowers, house plants, floral arrangements, or nursery stock.
A garden curator is responsible for the maintenance, development, and control of all collections, including living collections and herbarium and oversees periodic reviews of live plants for disease and general health
Deals with helping farmers maximize their crop outputs by advising on planting, growing, and harvesting techniques. They may also advise farmers on the best ways to irrigate soil to protect crops from insects or parasites, or give advice on planting trees in shady areas.
A produce inspector works for government or private agencies and inspects fresh and processed fruits and vegetables to determine the condition of the produce, ensures storage at proper temperature and makes suggestions for shelf life and use for different varieties, helping to maintain a high level of quality and uniformity in the produce industry.
Landscape designers work at creating gardens with combinations of plant material and hardscapes, using appropriate plants to achieve the desired aesthetic effect. They apply their knowledge of soil science and plant physiology to decide what plants are suited to the conditions present on a particular site.

How to become a Horticulturist?

Step 1
Take science stream in 12th

Science Stream with Biology/Agriculture in Class 12th is required for admission into horticulture courses at the UG level.

Step 2
Take B.Sc in Horticulture

B.Sc. in Horticulture is a 3 years full time undergraduate course. This branch makes use of the concepts of Biology, Biochemistry, Genetic Engineering etc.

Step 3
Take M.Sc in Horticulture

For a Master’s degree, candidates must have completed their undergraduate degree with minimum 60% marks. A UG degree in related fields like Agriculture would also be a sufficient qualification for admission into PG courses.

Horticulture Colleges

Name State District Type Website Course

Graduate Admission Requirements

Requirements for admission into a PG course in one of the top institutions to help you get an overall picture

India (For M.Sc. in Horticulture from Indian Agricultural Research Institute)

  • A bachelor's degree in Agriculture/Horticulture.
  • An entrance examination is conducted by the Education Division of ICAR and on the basis of the merit list prepared, the ICAR finalizes the admission for M.Sc.
  • A good knowledge of English is essential.

Foreign (For Master of Science in Horticulture from Pennsylvania State University)

  • A Bachelor’s degree in agriculture or biological sciences with strong academic performance
  • Scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE)
  • A minimum composite score of 6.5 on the IELTS.
  • Official transcripts
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Three letters of recommendation

To see the entrance exams, scholarships and UG admission details, click here

Skills Required

Technical & Practical Skills

A horticulturist must be able to understand, measure, and monitor various situations and apply technical knowledge. They must be open to seek training opportunities for further development to improve performance in day to day tasks.

Analytical Skills

A horticulturist must possess the ability to collect and analyze information related to a variety of crops, their cultivation, planting, etc.

Communication Skills

In this position, one should possess a balance in listening and talking; speaking and writing clearly and accurately; in order to keep others informed.

Self Management

As a horticulturist, self managing is of great importance. They should focus on effective planning and time management as well as prioritisation of tasks.


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