Senior Researcher (Research & Horticulture)
School of Study
Royal Horticultural Society
Master of Horticulture
Furthering Education in a Global Context
The Master of Horticulture course offered by the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) is specifically designed for horticulture professionals already working within the industry looking to further develop their knowledge base and skill sets. The course looks at the broad industry of horticulture with particular reference to the changing face of horticulture in the modern world. The management of public parks and gardens as well as business operations management in public parks and gardens on a local and global scale are key components of the course.
While the course has only just begun, the amount of support from the RHS has been tremendous. Great efforts to encourage interaction between students from diverse backgrounds have made participation in discussions and debates lively and inspiring. At the same time, the resources provided, including access to the world’s largest horticulture library as well as considerable online resources have made research for assignments easily within reach. The course itself offers flexibility in choosing the modules of relevance to candidates’ field of work or interest.
The course has broadened my perspective on horticulture significantly, giving insight into operating successfully in the growing global horticulture industry. The emphasis on people management and organisational efficiency develops a keener sense of how to manage a team and run an organisation. One critical facet the course covers is knowledge of the international horticulture market as well as associated market relations and dynamics. Given Gardens by the Bay’s iconic status as an international horticultural attraction featuring plants from all over the world, having the knowledge and skills to operate in a dynamic international horticulture industry is important.
Harnessing Nature’s Wonders
I am currently part of the Research team where I work on the changing floral displays in the Flower Field. The Flower Field is the centrepiece of the Flower Dome and hosts 6-8 changing displays annually, each with a different theme, look and feel. Because each display is different, every day on the job is different, and so are the challenges. From the initial conceptualisation of the design, to the detailed planning and working out of the storyline, to the sourcing of materials, the job is a challenging yet inspiring and invigorating one! Liaising with numerous parties is a large part of the job and linking everyone together, ensuring everything is done at the right time, in the right way, is essential to meet our tight timelines as well as put on a good show for the visiting public.
Being able to work in a one-of-a-kind horticultural attraction on this scale provides multi-dimensional exposure and the opportunity to be involved in operations, design, architecture and planning, events and programming, just to name a few. A supportive management allows for personal and professional growth, and this same management has brought together a passionate and motivated team, galvanised in spirit to bring the Gardens to greater heights. Nothing is more rewarding to the staff than seeing visitors to this People’s Garden delight in the wonders of nature.