Figuring among the first subjects offered by the South China Agricultural University, horticulture comprises five sub-disciplines of pomology, vegetable science, tea science, ornamental horticulture and postharvest science. In 2007, pomology and vegetable science were classified as State Key Discipline and Guangdong Provincial Key Discipline, respectively. In 2009, tea science was selected as state-level characteristic discipline. In 2012, horticulture discipline was distinguished as the Key Discipline of Guangdong Province.
As previously mentioned, the teaching staff associated with the horticulture subject is well-organized and consistent. The subject is concerned mainly with exploration of the features of South Subtropical Horticulture and puts a great deal of emphasis on the integration of applied technology research and empirical work. At provincial and ministerial levels, the subject has six research platforms. During the period from 2011 to 2016, it carried out over 200 research projects on behalf of the National Natural Science Fund and various provincial and ministerial authorities. The subject has been included among the advanced-level national subjects since five of its accomplishments have received the secondary national science and technology progress awards.