20-07-2023 Skills & Tips

Changing to a landscaping career: how much training will you need?

Basic training remains the direct route, but the sector is opening up to other profiles who know how to make their side skills count.


At a time when over half of all landscaping firms are struggling to find staff, the sector is putting its imagination to work to attract professionals on the lookout for greener pastures. Are you interested in becoming a landscape gardener, interior landscaper, tree pruner, tree planter, or what about a pond installer? Are you wondering if you need to go on a landscaping course to make the change? We answer all your questions!

Basic training remains the direct route—but the sector is opening up to other profiles

Is that because the sector tends to pass under people’s radar or doesn’t get enough love in school career counseling? Whatever the reason, career opportunities in the landscaping sector remain a mystery to many and there aren’t enough graduates to fill the vacancies.

And yet the landscaping trades aren’t short of advantages or career openings. If you like— 

  • contact with nature
  • a creative job
  • engaging in something that has meaning
  • contributing something good to the planet

—then landscaping is the place for you! To overcome the shortage of applicants, landscaping firms don’t think twice about opening up to different profiles, even outliers, while counting on in-house or accelerated training to bring new starters into operation quickly.

Read our close-up on the landscaping jobs trends

Why undergo training to become a landscaper? Answers from the professionals!

For well known landscape architect Louis BENECH, patron of the 2015 and 2017 editions of the Carré des Jardiniers contest, training is important for getting to know the subtleties involved in being able to practice one’s passion—for example company management—but it is no substitute for on-the-job training.

People who haven’t studied the gardening universe invariably imagine landscapers as having undertaken some kind of formal training; but that’s a beginner’s fallacy that doesn’t always hold true. The desire to learn while getting one’s hands dirty, by getting down to the job, works quite well. Each school has its strong points—horticultural knowledge for some, the ability to imagine outlandish projects for others—but on-the-job training in gardens and drawing offices is indispensable to a concrete vision of how work proceeds.

According to landscape architect Victor LACAILLE, finalist in the Carré des Jardiniers 2015 contest, the wealth of landscape-related training courses lies first and foremost in the variety of subjects covered.

Horticulture, botany, ecology, soil science, city & landscape history, "classical" drawings, digital tools, etc., are all relevant and necessary to the understanding of a terrain, no matter what scale it’s on. The ongoing interaction between these subjects is emphasized very early in the program, encouraging the student to engage in rigorous methodology to provide answers for the studied sites that match the complexity of the different issues.

Learning to make your side skills count!

The landscaper of yore more or less filled the role of "landscape plastic surgeon". Today, artistic qualities alone aren’t enough to get by on, and specific skills must often be coupled with side know-how to address the issues of evolution in the district and its inhabitants.

Victor LACAILLE further explains that “Climatology parameters, real-estate pressure, societal transformation, and new flow dynamics force contemporary landscape designers to propose developments that are no longer just the effects of style but tend toward a framework favorable to the harmonization of individuals with each other and with their environment.” Landscaping can thus benefit from the arrival of diverse career profiles who can help diversify the sector through their input of side skills.

What kind of profiles are sought in the landscaping trades?

Highly specialized profiles like ecologist, water management specialist, or maybe bio-data analyst are in big demand at the moment for extending a team’s skills, thanks to their precision knowledge in rapidly evolving fields. 

What’s most important, however, is a genuine interest for the vegetable kingdom, a sense of aesthetics, and proficiency in the soft skills necessary to accelerate one’s in-the-field learning.

One advantage of the landscaping sector is its multiplicity of forms—working for local authorities and private individuals alike, whether in the city or the countryside, with latest-generation tools such as drones, along with its ability to keep in step with social issues. That leads to the development of specialist services in active design, ecological engineering, or the creation of dark infrastructure. It’s therefore quite possible for you to find bridges between your acquired career capital and that of the career you dream of pursuing.

Paysalia helps you change to a landscaping career

Are you wondering how to become a landscaper, what training you need as an adult career changer, or are you hoping to find companies who are hiring?

Make a date with us on December 5th to 7th, 2023, when a complete program lies in store to help you realize your objectives:

  • A Jobs & Training Village offering meetings with training institutions and centers. A jobs wall and a CV library will be at your disposal to help you know about and find the opportunity you were dreaming of at an event where the whole sector is gathered. 
  • A conference and workshop cycle will help you better understand the jobs & training dynamics while informing you of the sector’s latest trends both in France and abroad.

The success of your career change to landscaping relies on a good understanding of the sector and its developments. Make the most of all the chances by being part of the benchmark event that unravels job trends in landscaping!

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© Photo credit: Yingyaipumi / Adobe Stock


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