Healthy Fruit Trees, Bountiful Harvests

Orchard People's "Certificate in Fruit Tree Care" is ideal for beginner and intermediate level organic growers. The course is designed for gardeners, home orchardists and arborists in both urban and rural communities.. This course includes:

  • 6+ hours of video plus 32 mini-quizzes ($300 value)

  • 8 valuable eBooks and Guides ($50 value)

  • Final assessment and certificate of completion ($100 value)

  • 30-minute zoom consulting session with Susan ($100 value)

  • Orchard People community membership ($50 value)

Total Value = $600

Yours for just $249 if you order today

3 Reasons Why You Need This Course

Fruit trees can be productive and beautiful - or they can be a messy liability. New growers often plant fruit trees expecting generous harvests for years to come. But fruit trees need hands-on-care to thrive. In this course, urban orchardist Susan Poizner teaches you the skills you need to care for your trees, including pruning, fertility management, pest and disease prevention and more.

  • EASY TECHNIQUES - Growing fruit trees doesn't need to be difficult. You will learn tried-and-true techniques that are easy to integrate into your life.

  • SAVE TIME AND MONEY - Stop spending hours on Google searching for solutions to fruit tree problems as they come up. Protect your investment by taking care of your trees properly - right from the start.

  • AVOID SURPRISES - This course teaches you how to recognize fruit tree pest and disease problems, and shows you how to prevent them from getting out of hand.

Course Features

  • Short Video Lessons

    Each workshop is divided into short 10-15 minute video lessons that you can watch anytime, even during your coffee break.

  • 30-minutes of Consulting with Susan Poizner

    Ask Susan your most important questions and benefit from her extensive experience on a 30-minute one-on-one Zoom call.

  • eBooks and Guides

    Take the beautifully designed eBooks and guides with you into the garden or orchard for reminders about regular tasks.

  • 8 Hours of Training

    Complete the course in as little as 8 hours - but with lifetime access you can revisit topics and go though it at a pace that works for you.

  • Continuing Education Credits

    Graduates who complete the course with a mark of 70% or more will receive a certificate of completion. CEU credits for ISA-Certified Arborists are available.

  • Completely Risk Free

    If you are not 100% satisfied with the course materials, we will offer you a full refund within 30 days of purchasing.

Learn to grow apples, cherries, plums, peaches, pears and more

Sign up today for just $249 for lifetime access.

Course curriculum

What you will learn in this course

  • 1

    Welcome to the course!

    • A message from the instructor

    • Student walkthrough

    • Before we begin...

  • 2

    Module 1: Researching Your Fruit Tree

    • 101: Why Research Your Tree?

    • Mini Quiz 101

    • 102: Planting Locations

    • Mini Quiz 102

    • 103: Varieties

    • Mini Quiz 103

    • eBook: Fruit Tree Nursery List (6 pages)

    • 104: Climate Zones and Hardiness

    • Mini Quiz 104

    • 105: Disease Resistance

    • Mini Quiz 105

    • 106: Root Stock and Mature Tree Size

    • Mini Quiz 106

    • 107: Pollination

    • Mini Quiz 107

    • 108: Staggering the Harvest

    • Mini Quiz 108

    • 109: Fruit Uses, Heirloom Trees, and Native Trees

    • Mini Quiz 109

    • Growing Urban Orchards eBook (Choosing Your Tree)

  • 3

    Module #2: Planting and Young Tree Care

    • 201: Planting Bare Root and Potted Trees

    • Mini Quiz 201

    • 202: Caring for Young Trees

    • Mini Quiz 202

    • 203: Thinning the Fruit

    • Mini Quiz 203

    • Preparing Your Trees for Winter PDF

    • Planting Your Bare Root Tree PDF

    • Growing Urban Orchards eBook (Planting and Young Tree Care)

  • 4

    Module 3: Winter and Summer Pruning

    • 301: Why Prune Fruit Trees?

    • Mini Quiz 301

    • 302: Winter vs. Summer Pruning

    • Mini Quiz 302

    • When to Prune Fruit Trees eBook

    • 303: Buds as a Blueprint For Pruning

    • Mini Quiz 303

    • 304: Branches and Ideal Tree Shape

    • Mini Quiz 304

    • 305: Winter Pruning in Five Easy Steps

    • Mini Quiz 305

    • 306: Pruning Cuts

    • Mini Quiz 306

    • 307: Summer Pruning and Pruning Out Disease

    • Mini Quiz 307

    • 308: What Does Good Air Circulation Look Like?

    • 309: The 25% Rule

    • Mini Quiz 309

    • Growing Urban Orchards eBook (Pruning)

    • Top 5 Fruit Tree Pruning Tools eBook

    • 310: Growing and Pruning Lemon Trees (Even in Temperate Climates)

  • 5

    Module 4: Preventing Pests & Disease

    • 401: Why Protect Fruit Trees?

    • 402: Orchard Polyculture Design

    • Polyculture Design eBook

    • Mini Quiz 402

    • 403: Good Tree Care Habits

    • Mini Quiz 403

    • 404: Organic Sprays and Your Trees

    • How-To: Alternative Dormant Sprays

    • Mini Quiz 404

    • 405: Identifying and Pruning Out Disease

    • Mini Quiz 405

    • 406: Using Sticky Traps

    • How-To: A Sticky Trap Guide

    • Pest and Disease Mini eBook

    • Growing Urban Orchards eBook (Preventing Pests and Disease)

    • Fruit Tree Recommendation Sheet

  • 6

    Module 5: Soil and Nutrition Management

    • 501: Assessing Your Soil

    • Mini Quiz 501

    • 502: Soil Toxin Testing

    • Mini Quiz 502

    • 503: Soil Fertility Testing

    • Mini Quiz 503

    • 504: Taking a Soil Sample

    • Mini Quiz 504

    • 505: Amending Your Soil

    • Mini Quiz 505

    • 506: Green Manure

    • Mini Quiz 506

    • 507: Mulching Your Tree

    • Mini Quiz 507

    • 508: Evaluating Nitrogen Needs

    • Mini Quiz 508

    • Interpreting Your Soil Test eBook

    • Growing Urban Orchards eBook (Feeding Your Trees)

    • Extra Resources: Soil Testing Guide

  • 7

    Module 6: Final Assessment

    • Final Assessment

  • 8

    Next steps

    • Congrats! Here's what's next...

    • More resources for you

    • Before you go...

Protect your investment in your fruit trees

Learn effective fruit tree care for just $249 USD.

Course Reviews

Join the hundreds of home growers, gardeners and arborists from North America and beyond who have learned essential fruit tree care skills through this online course.

5 star rating

Highly recommend this course!

Wenda Li

This was an excellent course and certainly the most comprehensive educational resource tool for managing fruit trees that I have encountered. I have been an arborist for more than 25 years and it was humbling and exciting to learn new information...

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This was an excellent course and certainly the most comprehensive educational resource tool for managing fruit trees that I have encountered. I have been an arborist for more than 25 years and it was humbling and exciting to learn new information that I can apply and share with colleagues and clients. I greatly appreciate the tremendous time and effort Susan has spent to create such a well-structured, easy to understand, and enjoyable online course that can meet the needs of everyone from the novice to the professional. -Wenda Li Elite Tree Care, Toronto

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5 star rating

Well worth the time to take this course

Rosamund Northey

There are definitely a lot of differences between caring for ornamental trees and caring for fruit trees. Because of what I learned in this course, my fruit trees - both established and new - are thriving this year. Taking this course was defini...

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There are definitely a lot of differences between caring for ornamental trees and caring for fruit trees. Because of what I learned in this course, my fruit trees - both established and new - are thriving this year. Taking this course was definitely time well-spent. Thanks for sharing your knowledge!

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4 star rating

Fantastic course - highly recommend to anyone growing apple trees

Susan Ruddick

I have an apple tree I planted about ten years ago in my garden -- a semi-dwarf espalier. I am an academic and so I thought "what the heck I can just go online and download a bunch of stuff to learn how to care for it!" Which I did. But over year...

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I have an apple tree I planted about ten years ago in my garden -- a semi-dwarf espalier. I am an academic and so I thought "what the heck I can just go online and download a bunch of stuff to learn how to care for it!" Which I did. But over years I found it almost impossible to sort through different strategies, account for regional differences in when and how to prune and feed, or discussions about timing and keep in my head the big picture about how to best care for my tree. My tree was healthy enough as trees go (lots of great foliage) but in terms of my original plans it was a hot mess, responded to my sporadic interventions in ways I did not fully understand and I have never had anything approaching a decent yield. My interventions were often based on something I had just pulled off the internet with little understanding of the big picture or a multi-year strategy to help my tree reach its full potential. Susan's course is a really worthwhile investment - it lays out the whole process from start to finish - how to pick a site, the need for soil testing (big surprise there when I got my soil test back and discovered some significant deficiencies) the timing and different strategies for pruning, for protection against diseases -- this is the whole package and then some. The videos are short and informative - they anticipate questions as they arise, the diagrams are very clear and on top of that Susan is a wonderful teacher -- ready to answer particular questions you have as they arise, coach you through anxieties (eg about pruning, over pruning). And this is a resource I can turn to again and again over the years as I help my tree reach its potential. I can't recommend this course highly enough - my only wish is I had started it ten years ago!

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5 star rating

Fantastic course and the captions made it accessible for me.

Ellen Murray

Susan, your course is really great! It's informative, well-structured and fun. I loved the way the Mini Quizzes helped me review the main points all along the way, as did the final quiz at the end. I'm really glad I'll have access to review it ove...

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Susan, your course is really great! It's informative, well-structured and fun. I loved the way the Mini Quizzes helped me review the main points all along the way, as did the final quiz at the end. I'm really glad I'll have access to review it over the years since there's so much information to absorb. But I also appreciated your final word, to just go out there and do it! Having a hearing impairment, the captions were great and made it possible for me to follow along. They were perfectly timed and flawless--which is rare and was very much appreciated!

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5 star rating

Lot of information, but don't be intimidated.

Richard Zuchnik

Very clearly explained. Easy to understand presentation. A lot of information, but don't be intimidated.

Very clearly explained. Easy to understand presentation. A lot of information, but don't be intimidated.

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5 star rating

Highly recommend this course!

Wenda Li

This was an excellent course and certainly the most comprehensive educational resource tool for managing fruit trees that I have encountered. I have been an arborist for more than 25 years and it was humbling and exciting to learn new information...

Read More

This was an excellent course and certainly the most comprehensive educational resource tool for managing fruit trees that I have encountered. I have been an arborist for more than 25 years and it was humbling and exciting to learn new information that I can apply and share with colleagues and clients. I greatly appreciate the tremendous time and effort Susan has spent to create such a well-structured, easy to understand, and enjoyable online course that can meet the needs of everyone from the novice to the professional. -Wenda Li Elite Tree Care, Toronto

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5 star rating

Simply Taught with Valuable in-depth information

Sarah van der Stam

This course is simply taught but chock full of valuable information, resources, guidance and my favorite - Susan explains what didn't work in their orchard and within her own garden and most importantly WHY!! So many resources just tell you what d...

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This course is simply taught but chock full of valuable information, resources, guidance and my favorite - Susan explains what didn't work in their orchard and within her own garden and most importantly WHY!! So many resources just tell you what doesn't work, but rarely do they explain why. Thank you Susan and Orchard People for making your mistakes and openly teaching us why and how to avoid and/or prevent us from making similar mistakes! -Sarah van der Stam, Kitchener Master Gardener-

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5 star rating

Certificate in Fruit Tree Care

Mary Backiel

Susan Poizner has created a comprehensive course in fruit tree care. She organized the material in clear and logical manner. The variety of presentations made the learning material fun and always interesting.

Susan Poizner has created a comprehensive course in fruit tree care. She organized the material in clear and logical manner. The variety of presentations made the learning material fun and always interesting.

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5 star rating

Great course. I want to do another one

Alex Smyth

4 star rating

Fruit Tree Care

gabriel ruzzier-gaul

This course on fruit tree care was informative and easy to follow. Lots of information packed into the video lessons, with helpful visuals and Susan's voice is very easy to listen to. For me, the art and visuals shown in the videos was most helpfu...

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This course on fruit tree care was informative and easy to follow. Lots of information packed into the video lessons, with helpful visuals and Susan's voice is very easy to listen to. For me, the art and visuals shown in the videos was most helpful in understanding what the lessons will look like when applied. Great course!

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5 star rating

Fun, interesting, and very practical

Andrew Tonkin

Excellent course! Not too technical, and filled with real life stories which made it interesting and relatable instead of dry and boring. I liked the short video and quiz format. I had been researching this topic for about a year and a half on ...

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Excellent course! Not too technical, and filled with real life stories which made it interesting and relatable instead of dry and boring. I liked the short video and quiz format. I had been researching this topic for about a year and a half on my own before planting my own fruit trees, but my knowledge was more on the researching and planting part, and not the pruning/pest/soil part. So I feel that this course gave me a much more rounded and fuller appreciation for the main aspects of fruit tree care. I'm so glad I found it. Thanks!

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5 star rating

Incredible course with SO much valuable information.

Allyson Waak

Perfect, easy to understand with nice printable tools.

Perfect, easy to understand with nice printable tools.

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5 star rating

Susan Poizner's Orchard Course Was A Blast!

Braydon Hall

The course covered exactly the things I was looking for, and I feel much more confident now about how to approach orchard care.

The course covered exactly the things I was looking for, and I feel much more confident now about how to approach orchard care.

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5 star rating

Delivered as promised!

Trish Walton

Very well thought out. Quick quiz at end of each lesson helped with retention.

Very well thought out. Quick quiz at end of each lesson helped with retention.

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5 star rating

fantastic

Lindsay Stuijfzand

WOW great details on citrus fruits! So glad to see this addition in the course, Susan!

WOW great details on citrus fruits! So glad to see this addition in the course, Susan!

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5 star rating

Fantastic Course

Adrian Valdez

I took this course hoping to learn about fruit tree care and expand my knowledge in edible plantings. I was blown away at the level of detail and the ease of the course. Exceeded my expectations and taught me much more than I had hoped for. Thank ...

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I took this course hoping to learn about fruit tree care and expand my knowledge in edible plantings. I was blown away at the level of detail and the ease of the course. Exceeded my expectations and taught me much more than I had hoped for. Thank you Susan!

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5 star rating

Interesting Perspective for Prospective Arborists

Robert Scott

Coming from an industrial forestry background and then into the urban forestry side, I believed there was only really one way to prune a tree - for height and structure, usually the taller and straighter the better. I thoroughly enjoyed both the w...

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Coming from an industrial forestry background and then into the urban forestry side, I believed there was only really one way to prune a tree - for height and structure, usually the taller and straighter the better. I thoroughly enjoyed both the winter and summer pruning modules because they explained that pruning fruit trees is not done for aesthetics or timber - it's done so to maximise fruit quality and yield, and facilitate harvesting. The organic approach was also ideal, as developing orchards and home fruit tree care ought to be done using integrated pest management, of which a lite version has been introduced here with the use of birds, physical barriers, and good tree care. Overall I am excited by the knowledge this course has given me and I hope to revitalise an urban orchard, as well as potentially try my luck with some (very) hardy apples on the North Shore of Lake Superior. Thank you!

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5 star rating

Essential Course

Lisa Ferrel

This course is essential in learning how to choose and take care of your fruit trees.

This course is essential in learning how to choose and take care of your fruit trees.

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5 star rating

Excellent course!

Carla Giddings

I would highly recommend the Certificate in Fruit Tree Care for anyone wanting to learn about how to select and properly care for fruit trees inn urban environment. The videos are informative and interesting with excellent handouts and resources. ...

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I would highly recommend the Certificate in Fruit Tree Care for anyone wanting to learn about how to select and properly care for fruit trees inn urban environment. The videos are informative and interesting with excellent handouts and resources. Thank you for designing and offering this fantastic course!

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5 star rating

Great course. I want to do another one

Alex Smyth

5 star rating

Journey to Orchard Tree Care

Patrick Kilkenny

I felt that Susan took me on a very well planned out journey that has taught me so much and brought me the confidence to evaluate my fruit trees in all seasons and as she says “ just be bold and go for it” when it comes to pruning. Of course that ...

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I felt that Susan took me on a very well planned out journey that has taught me so much and brought me the confidence to evaluate my fruit trees in all seasons and as she says “ just be bold and go for it” when it comes to pruning. Of course that advice is much easier now that I have completed all 3 of the interesting courses. I started with the IPM course and then the Pruning Masterclass and will admit at times I wondered if I could tie it all together. Well the Walk Off Grand Slam comes by completing this Certificate in Fruit Tree Care. That’s where Susan ties it all together with mini quizzes each step of the way that makes it a breeze to ace the final!

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5 star rating

250$ for a million dollars worth of information!!!

Brad cannon

one of the most interesting courses I've taken this is completely legit! at least 10 times during the course I remember thinking to myself ,"so that's why that happened to my trees". if you want to grow a tree then go down to the department store,...

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one of the most interesting courses I've taken this is completely legit! at least 10 times during the course I remember thinking to myself ,"so that's why that happened to my trees". if you want to grow a tree then go down to the department store, buy a tree, and stick it in the ground. if you want to produce fruit and enjoy the "fruits" of your labor then first take this course and then select and plant your tree... I assure you if you go to the local department store and pick up, let's say an apple tree and stick it in the ground you are going to be very disappointed but if you will take the time (which it's actually fun) you will have a beautiful tree/trees that will make fruit for years to come... I don't know how she learned all this information in 10 years but she did... it is actually a deal at $250 for all the work that she has put into this course... this is not something that was put together quickly on PowerPoint to put some money in her pocket she has put her heart and soul into this course and it shows.. plus she offers a money back guarantee how can you go wrong? I plant fruit trees and other types of trees for a living and had no idea of my ignorance on the subject.. bottom line I give her five apples up!!! I work very hard for my money and do not give out compliments lightly... also if you have any concern her information pertains to you if you're in key West or Alberta Canada... now if you live in the Yukon there's nothing anyone can do to help you so just eat moose and enjoy your lovely surroundings... I have seen other online classes like masterclass and other websites but I assure you, you will not get the personal attention from them! Thanks Susan, Brad C.

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5 star rating

Excellent Guide in Fruit Tree Care

Sharon Appiah

This course was comprehensive, easy to follow, thorough and overall a great overview of fruit tree care. Following along with a course online, especially with everything going virtual in the last year, can be challenging; but each section was brok...

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This course was comprehensive, easy to follow, thorough and overall a great overview of fruit tree care. Following along with a course online, especially with everything going virtual in the last year, can be challenging; but each section was broken down and engaging in a way where keeping up and paying attention was a breeze. Thank you for providing this excellent resource!

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5 star rating

New orchard here we come!

Cindy Rice

After this course I am more confident in pruning and fruit tree management. I am hoping to start a new orchard applying my new knowledge. Pest management is still foggy to me but I have a good foundation. This course was even fun and approachable...

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After this course I am more confident in pruning and fruit tree management. I am hoping to start a new orchard applying my new knowledge. Pest management is still foggy to me but I have a good foundation. This course was even fun and approachable for my children (they learned a lot too).

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4 star rating

Perfect for the backyard orchardist

Jennifer Brown

Self paced, covers all the need to knows, to help me prune and keep my four fruit trees alive. This was the info I was looking for and Susan kept it interesting and moving, while also making me test my knowledge.

Self paced, covers all the need to knows, to help me prune and keep my four fruit trees alive. This was the info I was looking for and Susan kept it interesting and moving, while also making me test my knowledge.

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5 star rating

This is a great course!

Gerri Gassert

As a lifelong gardener, I never had the opportunity to grow fruit trees. Having just purchased a property that allows me that privilege, I had many questions. Susan's course answered them all, moving at just the right pace and with great explana...

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As a lifelong gardener, I never had the opportunity to grow fruit trees. Having just purchased a property that allows me that privilege, I had many questions. Susan's course answered them all, moving at just the right pace and with great explanations. I have the confidence to care for my baby trees, making growing them that much more enjoyable. I will definitely take any courses she offers in the future, very well done.

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Instructor: Susan Poizner

Fruit Tree Care Educator, award-winning author and ISA Certified Arborist

Susan Poizner

Director, OrchardPeople.com

Susan Poizner in an urban orchardist, fruit tree care educator and ISA Certified Arborist. She is the author of the award-winning fruit tree care book Growing Urban Orchards and the creator of the fruit tree care training website at OrchardPeople.com. Susan is also the host of The Urban Forestry Radio Show and an instructor of Fruit Production at Niagara College in Ontario. Susan lives in Toronto, Canada.

This course includes Susan's Award-Winning eBook "Growing Urban Orchards"

An Indispensable guide to fruit tree care

Growing Urban Orchards is a full-colour, 111-page ebook Growing Urban Orchards. This book was winner of the Garden Writers' Association Silver Award of Achievement 2014 (Book Writing: General Readership). The GWA is now called GardenComm (https://gardencomm.org/).
Susan Poizner with a copy of her award-winning book in front of a cherry tree

FAQ

  • How long will it take to complete the course?

    You can complete the course in as little as 8 hours. Or you can take your time and go through it more slowly.

  • How long will I have access to the course?

    You have lifetime access to the course, so you can review it anytime. You will also have access to course upgrades throughout the years.

  • If I'm an ISA Certified Arborist, can I earn continuing education credits if I complete the course?

    Absolutely! Depending on your credentials, ISA arborist graduates of Orchard People’s Certificate in Beginner Fruit Tree Care will receive the following CEU credits: BCMA Science: 3 CEUs, Practice: 5 CEUs, Management: 0 CEUs, Climber Specialist: 3 CEUs, Certified Arborist: 8 CEUs, Utility Specialist: 0 CEUs, Municipal Specialist: 5 CEUs, Aerial Lift: 3 CEUs

  • Can I share this course with friends and coworkers?

    The course is for one person only, however we do offer group discounts. If a group wants to sign up five people or more they can receive 30% off the price of each sign up.

Additional products