HTA launches Grower support campaign at flagship event

With the aim of supporting the technical training needs of its grower membership, the HTA is launching a series of training and networking programmes next month at The National Plant Show (NPS) 21-22 June. 

Basic Principles in ornamental Nursery Management (BPONM) 

This eLearning course consists of eight modules designed to support training, recruitment, and retention of staff.  

Identifying the need within the industry to have a training programme able to give new starters basic and thorough training, the HTA has designed and developed BPONM with industry experts, to give its membership access to affordable, engaging, and comprehensive modules.  

The eight modules are: Plant Physiology, Pest and Diseases, Growing Media and Potting, Propagation, Pruning, Nutrition and Feeding, Watering and Weeding.  

Alexandra Jenkins, HTA learning & development manager says: “Supporting our industry with the issues around recruitment and retention is at the forefront of our mind. We have developed a course consisting of eight modules which will give the user a basic comprehensive technical training in nursery management. We have spent 24 months developing this e-learning, ensuring we have something that will be of real benefit to our members. 

“Not only is it designed to solve a huge issue we have within our industry, it is also unique to our industry. There is no other training out there that will cover this variety of topics and be so accessible.  

“We chose e-learning as it can be accessed anywhere on any smart device through browser or through the HTA App. You can pause your learning at any point. It has optional voiceover and is available in many languages. Once completed the learner will receive a certificate that can be used as part of ongoing personal development.  

“We are immensely proud of the course and hope it has a positive impact for our members.” 

 HTA Grower Technical Workshop Programme for 2022-23 

This programme involves a series of seven workshops, created in association with Zest-ICM, covering a range of important technical topics, many of them with a focus on sustainability. All the workshops are nursery-based, aiming to provide practical and pragmatic recommendations, based on previous research, recent developments, and current best practice. Each workshop will involve technical experts and contain presentations, demonstrations, and a chance to view on-site, small-scale trials. 

 HTA Nursery Network – ‘Making sustainability a core business value’ 

The HTA Nursery Network is a new opportunity for HTA grower members to come together and exchange ideas and views, within a commercial environment, to both progress and develop individual businesses and the ornamentals industry. The inaugural event will take place at Bridge Farm Group, Spalding and will focus on the range of sustainability initiatives which have been undertaken by the business (including growing media selection, water use efficiency, biomass adoption etc.) how they have been implemented, and their impact. 

Wayne Brough, HTA technical horticulture manager says: “The workshops represent a fantastic way to catch up with developments in key areas of production, see a range of trials and demonstrations undertaken within a commercial environment, exchange findings and results, and network with other growers. The HTA Nursery Network is a new regular opportunity for HTA grower members to come together and exchange ideas and views, within a commercial environment, to progress and develop businesses and the ornamentals industry in general. The first event has a focus on sustainability at one of the largest ornamentals businesses in the UK.” 

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