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AUSTRALIAN NATIVE FERNS VHT116

Duration (approx) 100 hours
Qualification Statement of Attainment

Learn more about Australian Native Ferns - study in the comfort of your own home

"Become a Fern Expert and carve out a career working with ferns"

Learn which ferns occur naturally in Australia, how to identify them, where to obtain accurate information on them, how to propagate them, growing and using ferns in baskets, terrariums, and landscapes.

Courses can be started anytime from anywhere in the world!

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"Become a Fern Expert and carve out a career working with ferns"

Learn which ferns occur naturally in Australia along with:

  • how to identify ferns,
  • where to obtain relevant accurate information,
  • how to propagate ferns, and
  • growing and using ferns in baskets, terrariums, and landscapes.

Australia is home to a wide variety of ferns; and many Australian Ferns have become popular garden, or indoor plants in places beyond their natural habitat. Certain Australian tree ferns for instance, are extremely popular garden plants in other countries. Some others (eg. Australian Maiden hair Ferns) are widely grown as indoor plants.

Any type of plant culture deals can be somewhat unpredictable, and requires both knowledge and experience to be successful. The best way to treat any fern is always going to be different from place to place, time to time and according to what you are trying to get from the plant. Taking a course like this helps you not only gather factual information; but also develops a "feel" for the way you should adapt to different plant cultivars and different growing conditions.

Course Structure

There are eight lessons including a special project in this course.  This course is designed as a detailed look at identification and culture of Australian Native Ferns. 

Emphasis is placed on the horticulturally valuable species.  The content of each of the eight lessons is as outlined below:‑

1.         Introduction  -Review of the system of plant identification, general characteristics of the ferns, main groups, information contacts (ie: nurseries, seed, clubs, etc.)

2.         Culture - Planting, mulching, watering, pest & disease, feeding, pruning, protection from wind, salt air, etc.

3.         Propagation  -Methods of propagating ferns. Propagation of selected varieties.

4.         The Most Commonly Grown Varieties - Maidenhairs, tree ferns, stags, elks, common ground ferns.

5.         Other Important Groups - Blechnum, Nephrolepis, Pteris, etc.

6.         Other Varieties - Hares foot ferns, Bracken, Fans.

7.         Making the Best Use of Native Ferns - In containers, in the ground, as indoor plants, growing and showing, growing for profit (to sell the plants or what they produce).

8.         Special Assignment - A major project on one genera of ferns.

 

Course Duration:  100 hours 

 
Start Date: You can start the course at any time to suit you.
 
 

Scope of Ferns Covered by this Course

Ferns have been around for millions of years ‑they are prehistoric plants.  

Australian ferns include a few which occur outside of Australia, some that are tropical, and others which are native to temperate regions.

Ferns do not have flowers or fruits; but they do have stems, roots and leaves. The stem (rhizome) is often below the ground and insignificant. From the stem grows numerous leaves (fronds) and wiry roots.

The main families of ferns considered in this course are:

  • SCHIZAEACEAE ‑Comb Ferns, a primitive family, rarely cultivated.
  • GLEICHENIACEAE ‑Coral Ferns & Fan Ferns
  • HYMENOPHYLLACEAE ‑Filmy Ferns
  • CYATHEACEAE ‑Treeferns (genus Cyathea)
  • DICKSONIACEAE ‑Treeferns (Genus Dicksonia)
  • DENNSTAEDTIACEAE ‑Bracken & other Ground ferns
  • PTERIDACEAE ‑Brakes
  • ADINANTACEAE ‑Maidenhairs
  • POLYPODIACEAE ‑Kangaroo ferns, Elks, Stags etc.
  • DAVALLIACEAE ‑Hares Foot Ferns
  • ASPLENIACEAE ‑Spleenworts
  • ASPIDIACEAE ‑Shield Ferns
  • BLECHNACEAE ‑Rasp ferns & Water Ferns

     

 

 

 

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Meet some of our academics

John Mason (Horticulturist)Horticulturist, Nurseryman, Landscaper, Garden Writer, Parks Manager and Consultant. Over 45 years experience; working in Australia and the UK. He is one of the most widely published garden writers in the world; author of more than 100 books and editor for 4 different gardening magazines. John has been recognised by his peers being made a fellow of the Institute of Horticulture in the UK, as well as by the Australian Institute of Horticulture.
Adriana Fraser (general)Writer, teacher, consultant, horticulturist and sustainable living expert for over 30 years. ACS tutor since the mid 90's, Adriana has written regularly for a range of publications (including Australia's national Grass Roots Magazine) since the early 1980's and continues to be actively involved as a contributor to Home Grown magazine and other publications. Adriana has a Cert.Child Care., Adv.Cert.App.Mgt., Cert in Assessment and Training., Cert.Hort., Adv.Dip.Hort.
Gavin Cole (Horticulturist)Landscaper, Horticulturist, Psychologist, Builder, Garden Writer. Studied construction and surveying at Bristol Polytec, B.Sc. at University of Northumbria (1988) and Psychology in Australia. He completed a Cert.Garden Design in 95. In the mid 1990's he worked as Landscape Manager and Garden Designer for the Chelsea Gardener in London and in 97 commenced his own business as a garden designer; operating at first in London, then in Australia. He has worked for ACS as a tutor, course counsellor and writer since 2001, alongside his own freelance work as a horticultural consultant and writer. Gavin has co authored many books and written hundreds of articles published in gardening magazines including Home Grown, Your Backyard and Garden Guide.


Check out our eBooks

Trees and ShrubsUseful for students, tradespeople already working in the field, or the home gardener who needs a quick reference when choosing plants for a garden.
Tropical PlantsThis luscious, illustrated ebook covers hundreds of different plant genera, and many more cultivars. You will learn how to grow plants commonly cultivated in the tropics and subtropics. It contains everything you need to know about growing tropical plants, managing them and working with them (they can be a little temperamental). Many of the plants can also grow in milder climates as indoor plants or in protected places. Previously published in print form by Kangaroo Press (Simon and Schuster).
Trees and Shrubs for Warm PlacesA stunning book with around 300 colour photos! A comprehensive reference to thousands of tropical plant varieties (mostly different information to the Tropical Plants book) . An classic reference for nurserymen, landscapers, interior plantscapers, horticulturists and any tropical plant enthusiasts. 209 pages
Tropical LandscapingTropical Landscaping is a style that may be used more in tropical places, but can still be created in cooler climates. This book provides practical advice and inspiration over 8 chapters: “Garden Design”, “Components of a Tropical Garden”, “Building the Garden”, “Outdoor Living Areas”, “Pools, Ponds and Water Features”, “Lawns”. “Plants (to use), and “Caring for Plants”. 103 pages 69 colour photos