Garden Design Academy

The Garden Design Academy - specialist tutors offering distance learning courses in Garden Design, Landscaping, Gardening and Horticulture. Located in the Loire Valley of central France, the Garden Design Academy also provides English language residential tuition in garden design and CAD technologies.

Courses are designed for English-speaking students at all levels - from the keen amateur right through to professionals seeking degree level career development. Run by Colin and Marie-Chantal Elliott, award winning garden designers and horticulturists with over 30 years experience, the support students receive sets the Garden Design Academy apart.

Distance Learning

We offer a wide selection of horticultural courses by distance learning with students from the UK, France and other European countries, together with learners from as far away as Australia, USA and Canada. Many British ex-Pats are following Garden Design Academy courses.

As the only college on mainland Europe offering the full range of RHS qualifications, these courses, leading to RHS Certificate, Diploma and Masters in Horticulture are always in great demand. With new qualifications launched in 2010, this is sure to continue. These are industry standard qualifications ideal for those following careers in landscaping, parks, commercial horticulture (nurserymen and plantsmen of all types), journalism and many other sectors.

We also offer training in landscaping and garden design to those beginning to make a living in this industry sector and needing a broad education in the subject while continuing to earn. Established and new garden designers also welcome our CAD training.
Our range of horticultural courses increases every year, with both general and crop specific studies available.

Residential Courses

There is a growing demand for hands-on, residential courses, especially in garden design related subjects. To meet this demand the Garden Design Academy moved to its current location in the centre of France in 2008, making us easy to reach from the whole of Europe.

Popular courses have been a "Design your own Garden" week for amateurs and "CAD for Garden Designers" aimed at industry professionals. Other workshops and short courses are planned for the coming months and years while we are equally responsive to requests for one-to-one intensive courses in garden design and other subjects.

Students stay in our renovated 18thC mansion and may visit the gardens and chateaux of the Loire Valley while they are here.

RHS Horticultural Qualifications

The RHS offer a career development path with internationally recognised qualifications starting at a basic level right up to Master of Horticulture. We support this program with courses tailored for the needs of English-speaking horticulturalists and keen amateur gardeners throughout the world.

Students following this program have a wide range of career options available to them in an industry crying out for trained professionals. Those following these courses have a history of excellence in the RHS examinations and a high pass rate.

When you study with the Garden Design Academy we support your progress every step of the way.

Courses program

Now nearly 50 gardening and horticulture courses including:

Distance Learning

Certificate in Garden Design

RHS Level 2 Certificate in Horticulture

RHS Level 3 Advanced Certificate in Horticulture

RHS Level 3 Diploma in Horticulture

Garden History

Permaculture Systems

Landscaping I

Horticulture I


Residential Courses

Design your own Garden

CAD for Garden Designers

.....and several others planned.

RHS Qualifications

RHS Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Plant Growth, Propagation and Development

RHS Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Garden Planning, Establishment and Maintenance

RHS Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Horticulture

RHS Level 3 Certificate in the Principles of Plant Growth, Health and Applied Propagation

RHS Level 3 Certificate in the Principles of Garden Planning, Construction and Planting

Master of Horticulture (RHS)

45 rue de Varennes
36210  Chabris
Tel: 0033 254 40 15 42
Web site:

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