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Administrative Unit:Horticulture
College/School: College of Agricultural and Life Sciences
Admitting Plans:M.S., Ph.D.
Degrees Offered:M.S., Ph.D.
Minors and Certificates:Doctoral Minor

Faculty: Professors Goldman (chair), Bamberg, Bussan, Colquhoun, Havey, Jiang, Krysan, Nienhuis, Palta, Patterson, Simon, Spooner, Yandell; Associate Professors Bethke, Jansky, Jull; Assistant Professors Atucha, Dawson, Endelman, Weng, Zalapa


The department provides graduate training leading to the master of science and the doctor of philosophy in horticulture.  Specializations are available in several aspects of crop science: organic and sustainable horticulture, diversified crop production for urban and regional food systems,  environmental impact of horticultural practices,  environmental regulation of plant growth and development, plant breeding, cytogenetics, biochemistry and molecular biology of horticultural plants, microculture and biotechnology, weed control and herbicide physiology, and biostatistics. Students have the opportunity to develop their research projects using vegetables, fruits, trees, ornamentals, turf, specialty crops, or model species such as Arabidopsis thaliana. The department may be consulted for specific career information.

The department houses research labs, controlled environment chambers, and greenhouse facilities.  Field-plot areas with associated storage and laboratory facilities are available at the UW–Madison Arboretum, Horticulture Research Farm, and the University Experimental Farms at selected locations throughout the state. In conjunction with the farm at Sturgeon Bay, the world's largest collection of tuber-bearing Solanums is maintained by the Inter-Regional Potato Introduction Project and is available for research use.

Master's International Program (MIP) 

This joint program with the U.S. Peace Corps coordinates graduate study with a two-year Peace Corps service commitment. Students work with faculty to develop applied research that fulfills the requirement of a thesis or creative project. For more information, see UW–Madison Peace Corps.

Doctoral Minor 

Doctoral students in other departments who wish to receive a minor in horticulture must complete a minimum of 10 graduate credits in horticulture, including 2 credits of Hort 910. Interested students should contact the department for more information.


The department accepts applications for fall, spring, and summer entry.  The applicant's academic preparation should include fundamental courses in the plant sciences such as botany, bacteriology, genetics, and physiology, as well as courses in chemistry (general, organic, quantitative), physics, mathematics, and biochemistry. The academic average should be at least 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) with evidence of proficiency in subjects related to agriculture and plant sciences.

For more information: Department of Horticulture, 386 Horticulture Building, 1575 Linden Drive, Madison, WI 53706; 608-807-7391; kjones26@wisc.edu; www.horticulture.wisc.edu.