Hot, Hot Horticulture

Of all the glamorous, sexy industries you could find yourself in, horticulture and landscaping probably isn’t high on your list. But at Pickens Technical College, the Urban Horticulture and Landscape Program is the doorway to a wide array of possibilities and employment options for students. With many green spaces and parks throughout the Denver area, opportunities exist for those with experience growing plants and cultivating crops. The Denver Park Service is interested in protecting their many city parks and studying how different plants grow in city environments. If the lives of plants are interesting to you, join the Urban Horticulture and Landscape Program at PTC and learn about the many possibilities for careers in this field.

Simply put, horticulture is the study of how plants grow. Farmers are, almost by definition, horticulture experts. But PTC’s horticulture program isn’t a preparatory course on how to start your own farm, it prepares students primarily for employment in landscaping, greenhouse management, irrigation, nursery management, and interior plantscaping. The instructor preparing students for lucrative careers in urban horticulture jobs is Bill Cary, a 41-year veteran in the urban horticulture industry and a teacher for the past 25 years. In short, Cary knows how to prepare students for their next chapter in their lives in the field of horticulture.

Cary’s instruction covers the basics of horticulture and how to run a business based on a nursery or greenhouse. What is particularly exciting about the field of horticulture is the influx of new ideas of urban horticulture spreading around the world. Cities are starting to see more community gardens and shared spaces where people can grow their own crops in a dense urban environment. Greenhouses are benefitting from new growing techniques and ways to conserve water for irrigation. You can get your foot in the door of this growing (get it? Growing?) and exciting field by taking Cary’s horticulture course at PTC.

I know what you’re thinking. How many local companies are there really who hire PTC students fresh out of the Urban Horticulture program? The truth is, there are plenty such companies looking for skilled landscapers, interior plant designers, greenhouse tenders, and willing nursery workers. Students coming out of the PTC Horticulture program are prepared for these jobs and many have latched on with both hands. One good example is student Veronika Tucker, who completed Bill Cary’s Horticulture course at PTC and now works for a local Denver landscape maintenance firm. Tucker earned her job not because she’s a smooth talker, but because she learned how to work in landscape management from the hands-on experience she received at PTC.

PTC prides itself in giving all students the best possible chance to get jobs after they graduate. That’s why all of the courses are geared toward learning in the field and practicing outside of the classroom. You can only learn so much from watching videos and listening to an instructor talk, even one as knowledgeable as Bill Cary. The Urban Horticulture program at PTC challenges students to get their hands literally dirty and learn from experience.

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