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Frequently Asked Questions


I am based overseas - can I still join the SGD?

Yes - we are always looking to grow our international membership and welcome applications from designers who live and work abroad. Go to our Where Do I Start page to find out more about which membership category is right for you.

I am currently choosing a garden design course - which membership category should I choose?

If you have already enrolled in a garden design course, you can become a Student member, but if you are still in the process of choosing a course and are not sure when you will start, you could become a Friend. If you need some help deciding which college and course is right for you, you can find advice in our Courses & Careers section and our Choosing a Garden Design Course feature.

I am a retired garden designer – can I still join?

Yes – we have a Retired Membership option for Registered Members who wish to stop practicing but stay active in the industry. If you are a retired garden designer who has never been a Registered Member of the SGD, we would welcome you as a Friend of the Society.

I have people working in my garden design practice – is there a membership category for them?

Our Registered Practice status is an option for Registered Members who run a practice and would like to advertise their practice alongside their MSGD status. Registered Practices get a separate listing on the SGD website, can enter the SGD Awards as a Practice, and get discounted rates to SGD events, among other benefits.

The Lead Designer or Designers of the practice must be Registered Members, and sign a declaration that all design work carried out by the Practice is under their personal supervision. Registered Practices must also abide by the Society’s Code of Conduct for Practice Membership. Fees are based on the number of designers you have working in your practice and whether they are also Registered Members or not – please contact the SGD office to find out more.

I have been working in the industry for a long time – can I become Registered straight away?

It is possible to advance through accreditation quickly if you already have suitable projects to submit. We would recommend you read about our Professional Pathway closely to exactly see what you will need to provide to the panel for review, and apply to become a Pre-Registered member to get the process started.

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