The Horticultural Opportunity Program (HOP) is designed for adults with developmental disabilities. The program meets twice per week over an eight week period for a total of 40 hours of training. The HOP program offers students an overview of hands-on horticultural practices ranging from greenhouse production to landscape maintenance to floriculture. The intent of this training is to give students the basic skills needed for employment in the horticultural industry.

The skills that will be developed in this program include:

  • Planting, watering and managing greenhouse plants for a typical retail sales environment
  • Demonstrating the safe use of both greenhouse and landscape tools (non-power)
  • Performing small-scale planting projects such as container gardens, houseplant, herb and vegetable plantings
  • Learning the care of outdoor plants in a landscape setting by performing the functions of pruning, dividing and seasonal maintenance
  • Selection and cutting floral crops for seasonal retail sales

A significant body of evidence from the American Horticultural Therapy Association (AHTA) confirms the following positive benefits of using horticulture as a medium for working with disabled adults:

  • Activities help to improve both gross and fine motor skills
  • Participants learn how to cooperate with others
  • Participants learn how to follow directions and abide by safety guidelines
  • Gardening activities help to build endurance and emphasize attention skills
  • Horticultural activities help lessen feelings of anxiety and aggressive tendencies

Part 1

Safe use of garden tools

Proper clothing in the garden

Garden preparation and vegetable seeding

Greenhouse tools and practices

Herb planting and care practices

Transplanting techniques

Building colorful container plantings

Part 2

Caring for houseplants

Dish gardens

Cut flowers and flower arranging

Weeds and plant pests

Dividing and planting perennial plants

Safe use of garden tools, continued

Harvesting vegetables

Students will have the opportunity to earn OSHA-10 certification, a recognized general industry safety certification.


28603. 22 sessions: 55 hours, CEU 5.5

Time: 1-3:30 p.m., Mon and Thurs, April 20-July 2 (No class May 25)

Location: Landscape and Horticulture Building, LHT 110

Cost: $2,499

Student Eligibility Criteria

A student entering this program will be expected to exhibit the following behaviors:

  • Each student is responsible for their own self-care: This includes personal hygiene and maintaining a clean uniform and professional appearance.
  • No inappropriate outbursts and the ability to self-monitor and self-regulate behavior, use of appropriate language and actions. (Please see the CCM Student Code of Conduct (p. 22) in the CCM Student Handbook for rules and regulations.
  • Behavior appropriate for the workplace including public arena. Applicant must be able to self-regulate and be aware of his/her own body in space
  • Self-Manage the work task
  • Self-Motivated in managing the work
  • Able to organize work flow
  • Respect for others
  • Effectively manage mild stress (e.g. time demands)
  • Able to work in a team or individually
  • Remain organized during tasks and classwork
  • Cognitive and psychomotor skills sufficient to function in a horticultural environment and be able to understand basic instructions and carry out those instructions, consistently with moderate supervision.
  • Read, comprehend and follow basic directions, including the transfer to action.
  • Ability to recognize a hazardous/unsafe situation/environment and act upon it appropriately.
  • Reasoning sufficient to understand a critique and correction of work and/or constructive criticism.
  • Read, comprehend and follow basic directions, including the transfer to action.
  • Sustained attention to workload over time and goal achievement.
  • The student has the desire and motivation to participate in a pre-vocational college experience. Willing to learn about and use horticultural tools and equipment. Can use basic technology (cell phone, tablet, laptop, etc.).
  • Can self-administer medications.
  • Able to communicate with others and express needs
  • Able to handle changes in routine and can be flexible in fluctuating circumstances