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Category: Horticulture

The Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden
Des Moines, Iowa

Posted: Wednesday, August 14, 2013


The Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden (GDMBG) seeks a passionate, energetic horticulturist as it grows its team of horticultural professionals.  On January 1, 2013 the GDMBG launched a new beginning.  After years of planning, a bold vision, generous community support and a new staff, the Botanical Garden assumed operatorship of a 34-year old conservatory and 14 acres of land bordering the Des Moines River.  Armed with a mission of exploring, explaining and celebrating the world of plants, we are a garden now.  The Botanical Garden is a 501(c)(3) privately governed, not-for-profit institution with ten years of operating support at $845,000 per year from the City of Des Moines, Des Moines Water Works and Bravo of Greater Des Moines. In addition, the Phase II Endowment goal will grow the total endowment to $3.6 million.
Only electronic applications are accepted.  Please visit for a complete job description and employment application.  Applications should be emailed to
Reports to:  Horticulture Manager         
Function:    Responsible for year-round propagating, grooming and maintenance of the plants and gardens at the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden
Status:        Non-Exempt
Schedule:   Full-time, with mandatory weekend and holiday rotation and occasional evening hours

Primary Responsibilities
To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily.
The Horticulturist’s primary functions include:
  • Prepares the garden for daily visitors as well as special events, ensuring that the garden and surrounding are well maintained, that the plants and collections are healthy, and that the garden is safe and attractive for the public
  • Performs and supports horticultural practices that encourage overall plant health and soil nutrition, to include sustainable gardening and integrated pest management practices
  • Assists with the fulfillment of the Garden’s plant collection and plant records policies
  • Leads horticultural tours and assist with educational programming and special events, as needed
  • Maintains horticultural tools and equipment
  • Maintains records of work, garden maintenance, and plant health as required
  • Supervises horticultural volunteers, seasonal employees, and interns in horticultural tasks
  • Serves as part of the snow and ice management team during the winter months
  • Serves as a liaison to one of our partner horticulture groups such as the Bonsai Society, Master Gardeners, Orchid Group, Herb Study, or other groups
  • Collaborates with the Horticultural team on any and all tasks required for maintaining the highest standards of landscape management and horticultural operations
  • Working in the gardens and growing ranges of the Greater Des Moines Botanical Garden to establish and maintain plants for display and the collections.
The Horticulturist will be assigned to specific focus and duties, or a rotation by the Horticulture Manager. Additional job duties could include:
  • Leading the horticultural functions for the conservatory, show house and greenhouses
  • Managing container plantings, annual display beds, and specialty gardens
  • Greenhouse scheduling/ coordination, including the greenhouse system maintenance
  • Lawn and turf maintenance and overall tree care
  • Managing the entry and river front gardens
  • Managing the irrigation, fountain and pond systems
  • Coordinating the plant health and pest management program
The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required for this position.
Education and Experience
  • High School Diploma or equivalent required
  • Associates or bachelors degree in horticulture, botany, natural science or related field of study is highly preferred
  • Minimum of 2-3 years of hands-on experience in a public garden or conservatory, with in-depth knowledge of plant culture, maintenance, and identification
To apply:
Only electronic applications are accepted.  Please visit for a complete job description and employment application.  Applications should be emailed to

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