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University of Rhode Island — Environmental Horticulture and Turfgrass Management
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The Field
What is Environmental Horticulture and Turfgrass Management?

Environmental Horticulture and Turfgrass Management, aspects of the science and practice of Horticulture, focus on the production, establishment and maintenance of flowers, trees, shrubs, and turfgrass for human enjoyment. Our other major, Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems focuses on the production of grain, fruits, berries, nuts, and vegetables as well as aspects of animal management and human nutrition.

General topics of study include:

  • Management
  • Nutrition
  • Reproduction
  • Behavior
  • Health and Welfare

This program offers many opportunities for students to gain hands-on experience both at URI and through summer internships. Many students work assist with faculty research, or set up projects of their own. There are so many opportunities in the "green industry" that virtually all majors are employed right after graduation. Horticulture is a great career for people who love working with both plants and people, as scientists, growers or landscape professionals.

Important Topics and Issues

Some of the important topics and issues in horticulture focus on sustainability achieved by reducing the need for inputs such as water, fertilizer, and pesticides. This involves continually learning and adjusting to select superior plants, maintaining excellent soil quality, and knowing and addressing pest and other issues quickly and professionally. Invasive exotic plants and pests provide frequent challenges to be addressed by knowledgeable horticulturists. All aspects of horticulture require up-to-date technical knowledge of how plants grow and how they respond to their environment - hence horticulture is very much a life-long learning career.