At idverde we realise the importance of engaging with the next generation of colleagues across our business, whether that be gardeners, landscapers, or more office-based roles.
We believe Apprenticeships are fundamentally important in giving younger people, or, indeed, those who have been the industry some time, the opportunity to learn on the job in a structured way and to gain a qualification.
For National Apprenticeship Week, we’ve been chatting to some of our current and recently graduated Apprentices to find out more about their experiences on their learning journey.
Luke Saggers based at Camberwell New Cemetery in the London Borough of Southwark
Luke completed his Level 2 Horticulture Apprenticeship in July 2020. He’s now a Grounds Maintenance Operative in Camberwell New Cemetery and is rightly proud of how much he learned during his Apprenticeship.
Why did you decide to do this Apprenticeship?
I had already been working within idverde for two years, and once the opportunity came up to take part in the course it was a no-brainer. I had already learnt a lot from being in horticulture for two years, but this was a way of taking my knowledge to the next level. Through doing the course I could learn a lot about horticulture but also open my eyes up to the different career roles I could pursue within horticulture. In my eyes the sky is the limit so, whenever anything comes up that can better me, I’m in.
What were your favourite parts of your Apprenticeship?
On the whole, the course was very interesting and I enjoyed a lot of it. From classwork to practicals, to day trips, it was a rollercoaster of excitement. However, I must say the favourite part for me would be the practicals as I do like to be hands on. Whether it be strimming, mowing, weeding or even planting, I enjoyed it all.
Did you learn anything during your Apprenticeship that surprised you?
One thing I must say is you learn so much on the course it is crazy. I didn’t think I could take in so much information about something, but I did. I would say the main thing I learned that surprised me was the plant idents. At the beginning I was helpless, it just wouldn’t stick. I couldn’t remember any. Once I knuckled down and put my mind to it slowly but surely it was sticking. Before I knew it, by the time I was ready for my exam I felt confident enough with plant idents.
How has doing the Apprenticeship benefitted you, and how has it affected your long-term career path?
The apprenticeship has benefited me in many ways. All the information I learnt on the course was crazy and it can only benefit me within the horticulture industry. The course takes you through a lot of different sections within horticulture, so getting a good understanding throughout will only help me on my next adventure within horticulture. I have a lot to learn but the course has opened my eyes to what I want in the future and that is to run my own gardening business.
Why would you recommend people take up an Apprenticeship with idverde?
I would 100% recommend the apprenticeship to others as it could really kick start a career for them and also help them gain knowledge within horticulture. It is serious, but also fun at the same time, so it works well and you can only benefit from the experience.
What advice would you give to anyone considering doing an Apprenticeship?
Don’t hesitate to take advantage of a great opportunity. It could be horticulture isn’t for you, but to not take the chance would be silly, because I’m sure the course can change people’s minds.
Where would you like to be in five years?
I don’t know what the future holds for me as your life could literally change in a day. So I’m very open minded to opportunities arising elsewhere, as well as in horticulture. However, I will always chase my dream to run my own gardening business as that is a priority no matter the circumstances.