Moira Farnham is the co-founder and Principal of one of the UK’s leading garden design colleges, Garden Design School (GDS). The School offers a 36-week intensive, part-time one year Diploma in Garden Design, with one day each week devoted to lectures and studio sessions (either Tuesdays or Thursdays).

GDS is one of the most successful independent colleges in the UK. The course teaches all the core skills required to become a practising professional garden designer with more than 75% of all the teaching undertaken by Moira and her co-director Robin Templar Williams.

The course is taught at the college’s training centre in the beautiful surroundings of Painshill Park in Cobham, Surrey, UK - just 15 miles (24km) from London, and in Bristol at the Bristol Botanic Garden, which is part of Bristol University.

Diploma Course in Garden Design

The Diploma covers all of the core skills needed to set up and practise as a professional garden designer. These include:

  • Design Principles
  • Drawing and Drafting Skills
  • Surveying and Site Analysis
  • Plant Knowledge
  • Planting Design
  • Hard Landscape Design
  • Hard Landscape Construction
  • Colour Theory
  • Colour Application and Rendering
  • Water in the Garden
  • Lighting
  • Irrigation and Drainage
  • Specifications and Project Management
  • Starting Up as a Garden Designer
  • Business and Profesional Practice
  • Promotion and Marketing 

Class sizes are limited to a maximum of 18 students, allowing plenty of scope for one-to-one support from the tutors. For more details about the course - including dates, location/travel, student feedback and tuition fees - please visit the GDS website: or call Justine Davis on 01380 728788.

Painshill Park, Surrey

            Bristol Botanic Gardens 


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