Grow Careers Event Review by Becky Cross

SRUC Student Ambassador Becky Cross attended the Grow Careers Event at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh on 21st November. Here she writes her account of the day.

The annual Grow Careers event at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh was a great success, a day of diverse presentations and speakers from across the horticultural sector, covering a range of topics. The event is aimed at anyone who is interested in a career, or further developing their career in horticulture.

After a warm welcome from Beechgrove Garden Presenter George Anderson, the Chief Executive of the James Hutton Institute, Professor Colin Campbell, spoke about the future of vertical indoor farming. It was a fascinating, and thought provoking talk, giving everyone food for thought and highlighting the exciting research currently being undertaken to gain more knowledge about the future of vertical farming.

A panel of four young horticulturists gave 5 minute presentations about their horticultural careers so far; this ranged from Rosie Burgon from Scottish Cut Flowers and how she set up her business, to Graham Gunn who is now Kevock Garden Plants Manager. Jennifer Wright, a 3rd year Professional Gardeners’ Guild Trainee, gave an excellent talk which was also a great promotion for the PGG; I am an ex-trainee and represented the PGG on their stand. Thanks to Jennifer there was a lot of interest in the Traineeship and all of our promotional material disappeared at lunch-time.

During the lunch hour the place was buzzing with life; the event was fully booked, it was fantastic to see so many people. Students flocked to the various stands and exhibits, as well as the PGG there were other horticultural societies and industry representatives, like the Chartered Institute of Horticulture, which provided an ideal networking opportunity.

Two talks ended the day, one from Ellen Mary (well-known for the Plant Based Podcast) who promoted the power of social media and how important a tool it can be to gain a presence and raise your profile in horticulture.

Luciano Giubbilei, renowned garden designer, finished the day with a wonderful slideshow of plants and gardens, including those he designed for Chelsea.

Overall it was a thoroughly enjoyable and inspiring day; a new quote I heard which I now cannot forget sums up the Scottish climate, and national spirit, perfectly: “Today’s rain is tomorrow’s whisky”!

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