CAFRE - Northern Ireland - British Florist Association

CAFRE – Northern Ireland

The College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprises (CAFRE) offers you the opportunity to study the most appropriate course which will lead you to a career in the agri-food and rural business area. If you are already working in the industry, we can help you to continue with your professional development or assist you to upskill and innovate to stay ahead in the market place.

At CAFRE our excellent practical facilities will allow you to learn by practicing and trying out new technologies and systems. These facilities on our three campuses in Antrim (Greenmount), Cookstown (Loughery) and Enniskillen support the delivery of a range of courses and technologies in agriculture, food, equine, horticulture and floristry.

Floristry is a wide and expanding business sector offering a career in a fascinating and dynamitic profession that combines creativity, technical ability and business skills. Designing floral arrangements is a creative job that requires inspiration and the ability to co-ordinate your vision into displays. Trends change so florists need to adapt their designs and shops if they want to stay current. CAFRE is a British Florist Association member College with an experienced, enthuastic and dedicated teaching team and offers the only full time floristry course in Ireland.

At CAFRE (Greenmount Campus) we offer professional floristry courses at level 2 and level 3. Both courses are offered  full time over 1 year and are designed to provide training to school leavers, career changers and those who have worked in the floristry industry for a number of years.

Floristry has been taught at the college for over 20 years. The Floristry facilities are set within the beautiful Victorian walled garden at the college and we have two dedicated classrooms, a shop display, and merchandising area as well as a cooler to store our flowers and a photography studio. The most recent addition to the Floristry facilities is the indoor plant studio which doubles up as a plant display and sales area.  Each classroom has been furnished with working height tables and stools and an extensive range of floristry equipment for students to use while they are studying on our courses. 

Each year our Floristry students are encouraged to stretch and challenge themselves and we have had great success over the years in the Chelsea florist and Chelsea young florist of the year competitions, World skills UK, New Covent Garden Market intercollege competitions and Fleurex.

Picture: Michael Cooper

Our Team

Program manager Lori Hartman

Level 3 Year Manager Anne Marie Grant

Level 2 Year Manager Sherry Suett

Level 3 Advanced Diploma in floristry

This level 3 course is validated by City & Guilds and is designed to develop the skills of those who are already working in the floristry industry, enable them to build their CV through competition work and it offers a progression route from our level 2 course.

The program has 11 units 

  • Principles of health and safety
  • Undertake and review work related experience in the land based industries
  • Principles of creative design process in floristry
  • Plant and flower care
  • Tied floral designs
  • Floral designs in a medium
  • Wired floral designs
  • Glued floral designs
  • Business management and marketing in floristry
  • Trends in the floristry industry
  • Event floristry 

Entry requirements

Must be employed in floristry for a minimum of 2 days per week  

And have either

1 years’ full time experience in a retail florist shop plus 4 GCSE’s at grade C or above to include English and Mathematics 


Level 2 Technical Certificate in Floristry (or equivalent qualification) at Merit grade plus 2 GCSE’s at grade C to include, English and Mathematics

Level 2 Technical Certificate in Floristry.

This level 2 course is validated by City & Guild and offers a practical work based course designed to give students a broad understanding and appreciation of the floristry industry. Students have the opportunity to put the design and customer service skills gained at college into practice in their weekly placement with an established floristry business.

 The program has 7 units

  • Health & Safety for land based industries
  • Working in the floristry industry
  • Customer service
  • Caring for and maintaining floristry products
  • Floristry design principles
  • Preparing to create floristry designs
  • Creating floristry designs

Entry requirements

GCSE English and Mathematics at Grade C plus 40 hours work experience and a placement for 1 day per week for the duration of the course

In addition to the courses the student all undertake short courses in Health and safety, Manual handling, and first aid. 

We have dedicated visits to local wholesalers, growers and businesses throughout the year and have had study tours to England, Scotland and the Netherlands.

For further information 


Applications are all on line at:-

Contact program manager Lori Hartman by telephone:- O2894426992

Or email:- 

Freephone:- 0800 028 4291

Get the latest updates delivered directly to your Inbox!