Kildalton College has a large horticultural unit which is used for the education and training of horticultural students. Many of the enterprises are run on a commercial basis, giving students a unique real life experience and training within the horticultural industry. At Kildalton College we pride ourselves on giving students a very practical experience. We endeavour to use best practice and sustainable methods in our horticultural enterprises.
Fruit and Vegetable Production
The college orchard consists of 4ha of dessert, culinary and cider apples some of which are new varieties on trial. We also have other top fruit including pears, plums, damsons and cherries. Soft fruit produced in Kildalton include strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, red & black currants, gooseberries and rhubarb. Students also receive experience of vegetable field production including: potatoes, cabbage, broccoli, brussels sprouts, onions, leaks, carrots and asparagus. Students are involved in the sowing, planting and harvesting of these crops.
Kildalton College is situated on 16 hectares of established gardens and woodlands. The grounds provide horticultural students with a perfect backdrop to develop their plant knowledge and practical skills for a career in the industry. These skills include plant identification, plant combinations and maintenance and management techniques such as planting and pruning.
The college's commercial wholesale nursery produces in excess of 30,000 plants per year. There is a wide range of stock produced ranging from herbaceous grasses, roses, and alpines to trees and shrubs. The facilities include polytunnels, a 2,200m2 glasshouse and outdoor growing areas. Students at Kildalton College see and gain practical experience of plants being produced from start to finish. Students gain a wide range in the propagation of plants. Maintenance of crops in a sustainable manner and preparation of plants for sale.
Kildalton has a glasshouse and polythene tunnels dedicated to the production of high value protected crops. These include cut flowers and foliage, strawberries, food crops (lettuce, celery, early potatoes) and a range of bedding plants. Students are involved in the production of all of these crops from sowing to harvest. The glasshouse is also used by students to conduct research projects as part of the third year project in the Bachelor of Science in Horticulture
Kildalton has a golf facility that contains three par 3 greens as well as a sports pitch. Students are allowed to use these facilities in their down time. The turfgrass facility allows students to gain hands on practical knowledge and experience of maintaining greens, fairways, bunkers and sports fields to an ideal standard. Students have the opportunity to use machinery like specialised mowers, line marking equipment, aerators and fertiliser spreaders.
Cut Foliage Unit
Kildalton has a 1 hectare trial site with over 100 different genus of cut foliage shrubs. This plantation provides a valuable learning opportunity for horticulture students as these shrubs are used for plant identification and pest and disease identification. Agronomy practices such as plant density and optimum pruning regimes are also carried out.
Information on horticulture courses at Kildalton College are available in this booklet