An open forum for chatting about anything you want to.

These classrooms don't contain notes or handouts for the syllabus; they are a space for students.

With the re-structuring of the RHS website the discussion forums in the My Garden area disappeared. These were helpful to some people studying through distance learning, as well as to RHS members with general plant identification queries, and other problems which could be solved by asking other experienced gardeners rather than 'Experts'.

BEST has its own Facebook page where you can talk to past and present students - you'll see the icon on your home page - but if you aren't a habitual Facebook user you may not want to get involved in some of the online alternatives to meet other RHS students. So we hope you will think about using this space to communicate with our other students - who are also trying to make sense of the handouts, work through past papers, and decide if it's worth planting out their potatoes yet!

One area has been set up for level 2 students, and another for level 3; your tutor can help if you have general queries you want to raise.

You will all be enrolled in the chat areas - did you know that if you go into your user profile settings you can get your 'internal' emails redirected to any other account of your choice, so you don't have to be logged in to see email (only to answer it)?
apple for the teacher?
Good luck with your exams
by Janet Prescott - Sunday, 10 February 2019, 6:14 PM

Good luck to everyone taking their exams this session - Jenny's advice to the Level 3 students is just as true at level 2:

'Make sure you take your time reading through the questions so you know exactly what is required.  

Move on from a question if you are stuck on it and come back to it at the ...

Read the rest of this topic
(181 words)
Picture of Katie Martin
Sample exam paper r2112
by Katie Martin - Wednesday, 6 February 2019, 10:43 AM

Hi all, 

A sample paper has been put into the past exam paper folder for R2112. However it says Level 3, is this a mistake or is this paper one that we should review?

Thanks, Katie.

Picture of Sarah Clifton
Videos and Podcasts
by Sarah Clifton - Tuesday, 15 January 2019, 5:18 PM

Hi, I enrolled on the Level 2 course about 18 months ago and have had a go at reading some of the books on the reading list as well as the resource materials online but have struggled to retain a lot of the information. I think studying in a range of different ways would help me to fill in some gaps.

Does anyone know of any good videos, maybe on youtube etc, or any podcasts about gardening and/or botany that would be useful as an add-on to the resources here?



apple for the teacher?
Watch out - there's a lily beetle about...
by Janet Prescott - Tuesday, 1 January 2019, 6:17 PM

I just wanted to share with students in the Midlands and south of England this unseasonal guest in a border I was clearing today - New Year's Day, 1st January. Normally I wouldn't expect to see a lily beetle until late March or April, and only on fritillaries, then lilies.  Obviously the mild weather is confusing pests, so watch out !

(I realise that some of our students in the more Northern parts of the UK may not be familiar with the Scarlet lily beetle - how lucky you are.)

Picture of Paul Bermingham
Exam Locations - Ireland
by Paul Bermingham - Wednesday, 14 November 2018, 5:26 PM


Question for any students from Ireland.

I ma having difficulty find an exam location for February.  The RHS are looking into hosting exams in Ireland, but haven't heard any feedback for a while now, and realise the closing date for registration is fast approaching.

Has anyone had any luck sitting exams in Ireland ?

Many Thanks


Picture of Hazel Adams
October Assessment day - latin names
by Hazel Adams - Wednesday, 24 October 2018, 2:46 PM

Hello all!

I'm last minute cramming for the practical certificate assessment day on Saturday. Does anybody know if we need to know the latin names for the pests and beneficials, or will plain old "ladybird" and "slug" do?

Thank so much!


Picture of Paul Bermingham
Plant Names
by Paul Bermingham - Friday, 14 September 2018, 2:46 PM


Just wondering if anyone has any tips on learning all the plant names, like a minefield !



Picture of Sheila O'Connor
"Plant Names Simplified" missing pages
by Sheila O'Connor - Wednesday, 23 August 2017, 9:35 AM
Anyone with a copy of Plant Names Simplified may need to check their copy for missing pages: 50 - 61, 72 - 73, 106 - 107.

I received a copy on August 23, published by Old Pond Publishing.

Picture of Rebecca Kinsey
Getting to grips with Plant Growth!
by Rebecca Kinsey - Sunday, 26 August 2018, 9:11 PM

Hi there,

I'm just taking my first look around as I've signed up for the Level 2 Plant Growth Cert. Just looking to find anyone else who has recently started too. It's a while since I've done any studying, I've now got two small 'helpers' 3yrs and 18 months and am trying to work from a computer screen (Heaven help me!). 

I'm really looking forward to regenerating my garden that has been a bit hit and miss since we moved in 3 years ago. I'll post a pic or two in the garden section if anyone's interested (please feel free to comment).

Look forward to hearing from you.


Picture of Paul Sargeant
Hello and Where Do I Start?
by Paul Sargeant - Wednesday, 1 August 2018, 5:30 PM

Thought I'd come and say hello.  I've just started the course today (by start I mean I've managed to log in, look around and log off again feeling slightly overwhelmed).

I've enrolled on the Level 2 Certificate in Garden Planning.  It's been a long time since I've been in education so any hints and tips on how to plan my way through this would be marvelous. 

Looking forward to getting in to it and hopefully not making too much of a pigs ear of it all.

best wishes