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Life as a Horticulture Apprentice: George W and George H share their experience

11th Mar 2024

On a recent visit to The University of Oxford Botanic Gardens, we caught up with two of our apprentices on the Level 2 Horticulture Apprenticeship.

George W and George H started their apprenticeships in September 2023, and gave us an insight into how they have found their apprenticeship and what life is like working as a Horticulture Apprentice!

George W

George W chose to do an apprenticeship after finishing University. “I had never really thought about doing an apprenticeship before, but unlike University, with an apprenticeship I could learn and get paid at the same time.

I hadn’t long finished University when it was posted so I wasn’t looking for anything yet but my family knew about my love for plants and the Oxford Botanic Gardens, so they kept checking the website."

"I’ve always loved Greenery and being outside, I love spending time in nature, and I have a fascination with tropical plants. The Botanic Gardens is a place I used to visit for fun in my free time but now I get paid to work here.”

Whilst on our visit, George W and George H took us around the gardens, showing us a few of their typical jobs including pruning, watering, and letting us know what a typical day looks like.

“The thing is, there is no typical day, every day is different! I spend a lot of my time in the glasshouses, and when I get in for the morning I will spend a couple of hours before it is open to the public ensuring everything looks nice for when visitors arrive.”

George H

George H started his apprenticeship after coming back from Australia and wanting something practical to get stuck into. He found his apprenticeship on a job’s website, whilst looking for an opportunity which would enable him to work outside and be immersed in nature all day.

“The team have been absolutely amazing. They are very helpful with my college work and they have really pushed me to pursue my passions and enhance my career.”

Once he has completed his apprenticeship, George plans to continue his training: “Once I’ve finished, I could end up going down a bit further within the horticulture route and go to Kew Gardens to get some more qualifications. Either way there is a variety of routes to explore!”.

If you would like to find out more about our Horticulture Apprenticeships and the opportunities available to you, please click here.