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What is Horticulture?

Horticultural plants are intensively grown for food or for their functional or aesthetic value. The primary emphases of the horticulture program are as follows:

  • Ornamental Horticulture – the production of herbaceous and woody plants in nurseries and garden centers
  • Landscape Horticulture – the installation and maintenance of ornamental plants in residential, commercial, and public landscapes
  • Floriculture – the production of bedding plants, potted plants, and cut flowers in greenhouse environments
  • Arboriculture – the care of woody plants in urban environments
  • Turfgrass Management – the production and care of turfgrasses
  • Food Crop Production and Management

Horticulture Major

All majors within the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences have a required general core curriculum. In addition, students majoring in horticulture will take a broad range of required courses to establish a strong base knowledge of horticulture. Students may then choose courses to target their specific area/s of interest. The four main areas of interest identified in SDSU’s curriculum:

  1. Production: focusing in management and production technologies for a variety of horticultural crops.
  2. Business: focusing in general horticulture with a strong emphasis on business finance and law, marketing, and general entrepreneurship.
  3. Food Crops: focusing on the science of producing fruit and vegetable crops, post-harvest technology, and food safety.
  4. Turfgrass: focusing on turfgrass production, management, and maintenance.

A Horticulture minor is also available for integrating and combining horticulture into other interests such as education, writing, or fine arts.

Career Opportunities

The number of career opportunities in horticulture are as numerous and diverse as the field itself! Completion of a degree in horticulture can lead to careers in production, management, marketing, service, teaching, research, and product development of horticultural crops. These crops include herbaceous and woody landscape plants, fruit and vegetable crops, tropical plants, cut flowers, and turfgrasses.

Examples of careers include retail garden center managers, tree service managers, landscape servicing, greenhouse growers, local and/or specialty food producers, professional lawn care, sports field managers, golf course superintendents, plant breeders, and more!