We are delighted to see that Kobus Stander has recently been awarded a £2,000 scholarship from the South West Growers Show (SWGS) trust. This legacy has been possible due to previous profits from the South West Growers Show prior to Kernock Park Plants taking on the show organisation. The members of the SWGS board which previously included our own Mark Taylor (who sadly passed away at the end of 2017) jointly decided that they would support grass roots horticulture in this way.

The money is gifted through the David Colegrave Foundation (DCF) Scholarship, which supports commercial and production horticulture by spotting and encouraging emerging talent.

Originally from South Africa, Kobus is completing a BSc Horticulture at Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) at the Edinburgh campus while working at Pentland Plants Ltd in Midlothian.

Kobus applied to study in Edinburgh from South Africa due to his commitment to horticulture. Kobus possesses a passion for growing and improving his plant knowledge and has a core belief that plants can be used for ecological repair of landscapes and cityscapes. He eventually hopes to work for a business that specialises in commercial breeding programmes.

Kobus said: “Winning this SWGS Sponsored Scholarship brought a huge amount of joy and relief, giving me the chance to focus more on my studies and the satisfaction it brings. Now I can better devote my time furthering my horticultural knowledge, not having to worry as much about my international study fees.”

Supporting Kobus’ application, the SWGS Sponsored Scholarship Committee, adds: “Kobus is highly motivated and determined to develop his skills and improve his opportunities for employment in horticulture. His enthusiasm has already seen him win an RHS Gold Medal at Gardening Scotland for his Pop-Up garden. We fully support his pathway into horticulture and in doing so we have chosen to increase our award for this year to £2,000.”

With the backing of DCF through its scholarships, the horticultural industry can look forward to welcoming more bright students to the trade. Scholarships worth £13,500 have recently been awarded to 10 students with interests that include research, sustainability, crop management, breeding, horticultural therapy and commercial wholesale.