She was one of nine competitors aged under 30 who will take part in the finals organised by the Chartered Institute of Horticulture – vying for the £2,500 prize.
Frances came to Derby College after completing a degree in Horticulture and Garden Design at Nottingham Trent University. Having gained the practical experience that she required, she is now applying for a number of botanical traineeships.
She said: "I knew it would be extremely tough as there are so many different rounds requiring knowledge of a wide range of subjects in Horticulture but I am delighted to have come third.
"This will be fantastic for my CV and the finals was also an opportunity to meet top people in the profession."
The finals were overseen by top horticulturalist Martin Fish and the prize money for a travel bursary come from a trust set up in honour of Percy Thrower - the first ever celebrity gardener and presenter of BBC Gardeners World from 1969 to 1976.
Derby College Horticulture Lecturer Mike Baldwin added: "To reach the national final of this prestigious competition is an incredible achievement in itself so we are very proud with Frances' success in the competition."