Online Floriculture & Nursery Production Management, Graduate Certificate | University of Nebraska

Floriculture & Nursery Production Management, Graduate Certificate

Graduate Certificate

University of Nebraska - Lincoln

  • Course Delivery
    Fully Online
  • Total Credits
  • In-State Tuition Per Credit
  • Out of State Tuition Per Credit

Earn your degree from the University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Get the same diploma as on campus students

The online Floriculture & Nursery Production Management, Graduate Certificate is designed to provide students with field knowledge that is then interwoven with practical cultural and production methods.

The Floriculture & Nursery Production Management, Graduate Certificate is designed for: 

  • Nursery, greenhouse and garden center industry professionals
  • Horticulture agents involved in Extension programs
  • K-12 science teachers particularly those who may wish to pursue a Master of Science degree

The online graduate certificate in Floriculture and Nursery Production Management offers a selection of courses that focus on floral and nursery crop production including business management. Core courses lend a solid science background in order for the student to gain a greater understanding of how ornamental and floral plants grow.  

Students who complete this certificate may also wish to pursue a plant-related master's degree such as a Master's of Science or a Master's of Applied Science in Agronomy or Horticulture.

This program is offered as part of the Great Plains Interactive Distance Education Alliance (GPIDEA) and provides you with diverse perspectives on the field. You enroll in courses at the University of Nebraska - Lincoln even though courses may be taught by other Great Plains IDEA member institutions. The certificate comes from the University of Nebraska - Lincoln. 

Students who complete this certificate may also wish to pursue a plant-related Master of Science degree or a Master of Applied Science. 

Additional Certificates: 

The University of Nebraska - Lincoln's Department of Agronomy and Horticulture offers three graduate certificates in horticulture:

  • Advanced Horticulture
  • Ornamental Landscape and Turf Management
  • Floriculture and Nursery Production Management

The department is able to offer these three certificates as a member of the AG*IDEA Consortium. 

Career Outlook: Work in the horticulture field ranges from grounds maintenance staff who require no formal education to scientists who need a minimum Ph.D. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), grounds maintenance workers held 1,309,300 jobs in 2016. The BLS reported from 2014-2024, there would be an 11% increase in employment for grounds maintenance workers. The projected amount of job openings during this period is 146,300. The BLS projects that businesses in green-industry occupations and careers that protect the planet will increase.

Additional career paths may include:

  • Olericulturist (vegetable grower, seller and marketer)
  • Production and sales
  • Viticulturist/enologist
  • Plant ecologist
  • Floral company owner, florist/floral designer
  • Flower propagation & preparation of floral & foliage products for sale
  • Food scientist
  •  Researcher or technologist
  • K-12 science teachers particularly those who may wish to pursue a Masters degree
  • Horticulture educators involved in Extension programs
  • Industry support
  • Plant technician or researcher
  • Hydroponics
  • Inspection of plants
  • Public gardens employee or Urban Gardener/Urban farmer
  • City parks and recreation employees
  • Arborists or tree trimmers & pruners
  • Nursery, greenhouse and garden center industry professionals
  • Landscape maintenance planners & practitioners
  • Landscape designer, services or estimator
  • Landscape construction and management
  • Landscape design
  • Communications blogger, writer, journalist, photographer, marketer
  • Farm or Co-op organizational management 
Ellen Paparozzi, Ph.D.

Ellen Paparozzi’s key areas of focus are plant physiology (plant nutrition) and anatomy, floriculture and ornamental horticulture and plant physiology and production ecology. Her main research focus is on the broad topic of leaf yellowing and subsequent re-greening of leaves. She is approaching this topic using physiological, anatomical and molecular biological methods. She teaches several courses and has published numerous articles.

To be accepted to this program, you must have:

  1. A bachelor's degree

    A degree in biology or a plant-related major and successfully completed at least a semester of coursework in biology, plant sciences, genetics, algebra and chemistry.

  2. 3.00 GPA or above on a 4.0 scale

  3. A written personal statement

    In 1-2 pages, describe 1) your professional goals and career aspirations and specifically what you plan to do with your certificate, 2) background experiences, events, and/or education that have influenced your professional goals and 3) how enrolling in this certificate program will assist you in meeting your professional goals.

  4. 3 letters of recommendation

    These must be from professionals who are familiar with your work ethic or scholastic ability. Personal references from friends, relatives, etc. are not acceptable.

  5. Resume or vitae

  6. Taken the TOEFL or IELTS. Only required if English is not your native language. Minimum score of 79 on Internet-based TOEFL, 600 on paper-based TOEFL or 6.5 on IELTS required for admission.

NOTE: This program is authorized, exempt, or not subject to state regulatory compliance and may enroll students from all 50 states

To apply to this program:

  • Submit an official application for admission to the UNL Office of Graduate Studies. Along with the application, include one set of official transcripts from each college or university you attended, 3 letters or recommendation and your resume or vitae. 
  • Pay the non-refundable $50 application processing fee.
Apply Now

Application Deadlines

Fall Semester
May 15
Spring Semester
October 1
Summer Semester
February 15

The Floriculture & Nursery Producation Management, Graduate Certificate requires the completion of a minimum of 12 credit hours.

The universities in the AG*IDEA Consortium, which offers the Horticulture certificate, are:  

  • KSU - Kansas State University
  • NCSU - North Carolina State University
  • TTU - Texas Tech University
  • UNK - University of Nebraska-Kearney
  • UNL - University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Core Courses: Minimum of 5 hours required

  • HORT 824 Plant Nutrition & Nutrient Management, OR 
  • HORT 842B Plant Physiology, OR
  • HORT 896 Plant/Water Relations


  • HORT 843A Advanced Greenhouse Crop Production OR
  • HORT 844A Environmental Nursery Production Practices

Elective Courses: Minimum of 7 hours required. Select from the following:

  • HORT 844B Environmental Stress Physiology 
  • HORT 888 Entrepreneurship & Enterprise Development
  • HORT 817 Plant Pathology: Principles & Applications


  • ENTO 803: Management of Horticultural Insects OR 
  • ENTO 812: Entomology and Pest Management

Core Courses

Course NumberCourse NameCredits
HORT 824Plant Nutrition and Nutrient Management3

Course Number: HORT 824

Macro- and micronutrient elements and their function in the growth and development of plants; the role of single elements; interaction/balances between elements and nutrient deficiency/ toxicity symptoms as they affect the physiology of the whole plant; and the relationship between crop nutrition and production/environmental considerations (e.g. yield, drought, temperature, pests).

HORT 842BPlant Physiology3

Course Number: HORT 842B

Presents fundamental concepts underlying the science of crop physiology, including crop phenology, canopy development and light interception, photosynthesis and respiration and dry-matter partitioning.

HORT 843AAdvanced Greenhouse Crop Production3

Course Number: HORT 843A

Principles and practices of commercial production of greenhouse crops involving crop scheduling, greenhouse construction, heating, cooling, growing media, pest management, nutrition, fertility, growth regulation, irrigation, post-harvest handling and marketing of greenhouse crops.

HORT 844AEnvironmental Nursery Production Practices3

Course Number: HORT 844A

Cultural nursery crop production practices will be presented with consideration of current recommended Best Management Practices, conservation of resources, scientific research-based investigations related to nursery cultural practices, potential risks to nursery personnel and off-site movement of airborne materials and effluents to surrounding areas and public watersheds.

HORT 896Plant/Water Relations3

Course Number: HORT 896

Presents fundamental concepts underlying the science of crop physiology, including crop phenology, canopy development and light interception, photosynthesis and respiration and dry-matter partitioning.

Elective Courses

Course NumberCourse NameCredits
ENTO 803Management of Horticultural Insects 3

Course Number: ENTO 803

This course focuses on identification, biology, ecology and management of insect pests of horticultural crops, including vegetables, deciduous fruits and nuts, trees and shrubs, greenhouse crops, turf and ornamentals. Emphasis is on Integrated Pest Management (IPM) strategies employed to maintain pests below damaging levels while minimizing the use of traditional insecticides.

ENTO 812Entomology and Pest Management3

Course Number: ENTO 812

Principles embodied in the implementation of multifaceted tactics designed to successfully manage insect populations.

HORT 817Plant Pathology: Principles and Applications3

Course Number: HORT 817

This course is an introduction to pathogen biology, pathogen-host interactions, and environmental influences on plant diseases. It includes implementation of cultural, resistance and chemical strategies for disease management.

HORT 844BEnvironmental Stress Physiology1

Course Number: HORT 844B

Physiology of plant responses to environmental stresses, with emphasis on current research in selected physiological, molecular, and biochemical mechanisms for tolerance to environmental stresses such as temperature extremes, drought, salt, pathogens and other plants.

HORT 888Entrepreneurship & Enterprise Development3

Course Number: HORT 888

Students will research a specific agricultural enterprise, then develop and present a business plan using materials from the primary area of interest. Requires the completion of a shadowing assignment and the analysis of case studies. Please note that while the course is offered by UNL in both the fall and spring semesters every year, it is available through the special AG*IDEA enrollment system only in the Spring of odd-numbered years.

Cost for Nebraska Residents

  • Per Credit Hour

  • Tuition: $580.00
  • 3 Credit Hours

  • Tuition: $1740.00

Cost for Out of State Residents

  • Per Credit Hour

  • Tuition: $580.00
  • 3 Credit Hours

  • Tuition: $1740.00

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