Tag Archives: Capel Manor College

Lazy Sunday afternoon?


As some of you know, I’m in my second year of a Level 3 Certificate in Garden and Planting Design qualification at Capel Manor college in Regents Park.

Whilst last year was about plants and planting (and I was in my element) this year is all about the physical rather than planting design, and for Assignment 2 we were required to construct a scale model at a scale of 1:50 to illustrate the concept of ‘mass and void’.

What with spending a lot of last weekend in the car transporting a 12lb salmon from Basingstoke to Kent (don’t ask) I was rather behind, and so the majority of this weekend has been spent on the assignment.

I got the main part of the model made yesterday but then got a little carried away with sofa cushions, lavender hedge and the Duplo veg patch and before I knew it it was lunch time.img_1350

Which would have been fine, but I still had to knock up the scale drawing.img_1354

Only the final A2 sheet with details of the materials used to pull together before the Wednesday deadline.

Meanwhile, shame about the bulbs still sitting in the box they were delivered in a fortnight ago….

Back to school again


After successfully completing my Plants and Planting Design course at Capel Manor College at Regents Park last year, I’ve recently enrolled on the ‘sister’ course, Level 3 Certificate in Garden Design.

Two of my lovely fellow students from last year have also continued to this course, and we’ve welcomed some new faces, but we’ve kept our super tutor John Gilbert.

I was a little concerned I wouldn’t enjoy this year as much as last year as it focuses on the design of the garden itself, rather than any planting within it, but I’ve already attended a couple of classes and, whilst definitely less flowery, it’s still been really interesting.

Roll on Assignment 1!

Back to school!


So, did any of you read this article in September’s RHS Garden magazine?IMG_8952

Or see these adverts in the gardening press?IMG_8953

Well I did, and one thing led to another…

The Garden article, by Ade Sellars, described his experience during the past year studying for the RHS Level 2 course at Capel Manor’s Regent’s Park campus at the age of 43 (ha, baby!)

It was interesting for a couple of reasons, firstly, I was feeling rather envious of my daughter heading off to uni and a whole new world of people and knowledge, and secondly, I’d heard of Capel Manor but had no idea it had a Regents Park campus.

A little research established that the RHS 2 course was running on a Tuesday evening, one of the days I’m in London, so I went along in my lunch hour to enrol.  By extraordinary serendipity, Andrew, the chap I needed to meet with, was tied up with someone else, so I picked up a brochure and started reading about the other courses they ran, and one immediately caught my eye – ‘Plants and planting design’ (Level 3).  A quick chat with Andrew established that I’d need to persuade Capel Manor’s head of Garden Design that I was capable of a Level 3 course (with no previous relevant qualifications) and a sort of telephone interview took place the next day.  I gabbled about my love of plants and planting, and promised that my maths and art were sufficiently good that I would be able to draw to scale(!) and I was in.

I actually missed the first two weeks as I was away, but have now been to two classes and am absolutely loving it.  Spending an evening talking Latin, with lovely, fellow plantaholics, and looking at photos of gorgeous planting, with an informed tutor explaining all from a design perspective.  What’s not to like?

This weekend saw me completing my first assignment, and the time flew by in a flurry of research, planning and drawing.  And do you know what I found hardest?  Drawing the bloomin’ circles!  Who knew?

Roll on next Tuesday.IMG_8955