New Paths of Learning at the Botanics

Media Release



                                New Paths of Learning at the Botanics


The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh’s (RBGE) education programme is branching out in wonderful new directions to include subjects from biodynamic gardening to Amazonian indigenous medicine.

This year’s Continuing Education Programme introduces 25 new workshops and courses, a Diploma in Garden History and a Culture and Plants section which encompasses a variety of subjects including a Scottish frame drum making workshop.

Dr Greg Kenicer, Head of Education, explained: “This is a very exciting time for RBGE’s educational offering. There is a wonderful mix of established courses and new inspiring subjects and tutors. The courses on offer cover a broad spectrum and include interior design, tapestry, STIXX paper engineering, a course where students will be able to make items such as chairs and stools from strong rods formed from machine-rolled paper. It’s an imaginative and artistic way of recycling old newspapers.’’

RBGE is introducing an RHS Level 3 Certificate. Dr Kenicer commented: “This certificate follows on from the level 2 and is a great way to develop your understanding of garden theory. We’re offering the first part of the course, focussing on understanding plants, soils, pests and propagation this year and it will be a great opportunity for enthusiastic amateurs and starting professionals to take their skills to the next level. The Level 3 certificate is just one of our courses that will be supported by PropaGate, our new online learning environment. It will allow students around the world access to our amazing range of courses and the expertise of our staff.’’

Plants such as tobacco and coca will play a key role in the Amazon Forest Traditional Indigenous Medicine course. Tutor, Dr Ann Simpson coordinates the project Sabedores-sabedoras of the South American tropical rainforest, which researches traditional indigenous medicine and indigenous methods of conservation of the Amazon environment in Amazonia, Columbia, Brazil, Peru and Ecuador.

The eight-week course will explore topics such as Mythology, Shamanism and medicinal uses of plants for healing and preventative medicine.

RBGE is holding Cocktails, Canapes & Courses, an Open Evening on Thursday, 14 June at the Conference Room, Balfour Building, Inverleith Row, from 6pm to 8pm. Tutors will be on hand to give advice and information about all the courses and workshops on offer, plus visitors receive a 5% discount off courses booked that evening, and can bring some of their garden soil along for a free soil test.

For information online visit


For further information or images, please contact Sandra Donnelly on 0131 248 1037 or Shauna Hay on 0131 248 2900.

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The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh is a charity (registration number SC007983)