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New Zealand Diploma in Landscape (Design)

Are you looking for a creative career in landscape design? Follow your passion for the outdoors and design with the New Zealand Diploma in Landscape (Design) and develop a solid grounding in site analysis, garden design, plant selection, CAD modelling, and construction detailing.

120 (1.0 EFTS)
Mt Albert
Start dates
February and July
1 year full-time. 1.5 - 2 years part-time.

Programme overview

Please note: This programme is closed for the 2022 Semester 2 intake due to the high volume of applications.  However, if there are any withdrawals, we will notify the candidates on the waitlist. We recommend you apply early for Semester 1, 2023 intake. 

As part of the government’s Targeted Training and Apprenticeships Fund (TTAF) to help upskill workers in roles critical to the economy, this programme has no fees until 31 December 2022*. Click here for terms and conditions and a list of the programmes that are covered by this scheme.

Have you always dreamt of a creative career in garden design? The New Zealand Diploma in Landscape (Design) is New Zealand's premier garden design programme and gives you a solid grounding in site investigation, plant selection and garden design - essential skills if you’re aspiring to a career in landscape design for residential or small commercial environments.


  • Nationally developed qualification with linkages to the Garden Design Society of New Zealand
  • Fieldwork, real sites, and real clients
  • Park-like campus - a great environment for plant identification and studying landscape conditions
  • Solid base of plant knowledge
  • High tech CAD facilities accessible between 7am - 11pm
  • Flexible study – part-time options
  • Industry connected: work with highly regarded lecturers who hold executive positions in key industry organisations
  • Graduates of this programme can apply for the Bachelor of Landscape Architecture and, if successful, can obtain some cross credits.

Admission requirements

For this programme, you will need the following:

1.    Achieved one of the below:

  • A minimum of 48 credits at NCEA Level 2 in four different subjects; or
  • Completed the New Zealand Certificate in Horticulture Services (Level 4); or
  • Provide evidence of equivalent knowledge and skills

2.    12 credits at NCEA Level 2 in English

3.    If English is not your first language, you are will need one or more of the following:

  • Have achieved NCEA Level 3 and New Zealand University entrance
  • Be able to provide evidence you satisfy our criteria for existing English proficiency
  • Have achieved at least one English proficiency outcome in the last two years

Don't meet the requirements? We also accept:

  • Provide sufficient evidence to be eligible for special or discretionary admission

As part of the selection process for this programme, you may be asked to take part in an interview.

For more information, download the programme regulations:

Programme Regulations

Courses and timetables

For more details on the courses including timetables, please click on the course names below.

Courses Credits Aim
Design Studio (LAND4113) 15.0 credits (0.125 EFTS) This course introduces the practice of garden design.
Design Representation (LAND4114) 15.0 credits (0.125 EFTS) This course introduces representational conventions related to technical draughting, perspective sketches, rendering and collage.
Horticulture for Landscape (LAND4443) 15.0 credits (0.125 EFTS) This course introduces principles and practice of plant selection and plant and soil management within garden design.
Courses Credits Aim
Plants and Ecology (LAND5050) 15.0 credits (0.125 EFTS) Introduce plant systems for landscape design within the context of ecological networks
Capstone Project (LAND5115) 30.0 credits (0.25 EFTS) This course prepares students to create and manage a landscape design project within the statutory framework relevant to the landscape design industry.
CAD Documentation (LAND5215) 15.0 credits (0.125 EFTS) This course focusses on preparing students to produce a landscape design package for council approval using CAD software.
Designing with Plants (LAND5557) 15.0 credits (0.125 EFTS) This course introduces principles and practice of planting design and production of specifications and schedules for installing and maintaining garden designs.

Moving to Te Pūkenga

Vocational education in Aotearoa (New Zealand) is changing to better meet the needs of learners like you.

As part of this transformational change, in 2023 Unitec will become fully part of Te Pūkenga, a national network delivering skills training in a wide range of locations throughout Aotearoa.

This means that while you are enrolling with Unitec now, from Semester 1, 2023 you will become a Te Pūkenga learner.

Te Pūkenga has the success and wellbeing of learners at its heart, and a review of all programmes is currently underway to help support this, including this programme. The aim is to make qualifications more portable, consistent and closely aligned with the needs of industry, and more in tune with where the world is headed.

The information contained here is correct at the time of publishing, but as the programme review is ongoing, the courses outlined may be liable to change over time.

Rest assured that we will notify you of any material changes to delivery that might impact what you study, where you study or the ways you learn.