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Garden Manager
Category: Manager

Ruth Bancroft Garden
Walnut Creek, California

Posted: Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Garden Manager position

Ruth Bancroft Garden

January 2014

The Ruth Bancroft Garden, a public garden and a nonprofit 501 (c) (3) organization in Walnut Creek, California is currently interviewing for a Garden Manager position. The Ruth Bancroft Dry Garden is a 3 ½ acre internationally significant collection and unique display of plants from arid regions of the world that Ruth Bancroft originally selected for their ability to thrive in the inland East San Francisco Bay region. This is a part-time position 3-4 days per week.

Reports to: Executive Director
Classification: Non-exempt

Job Function
The Ruth Bancroft Garden Manager (GM) is responsible for the preservation and development of the physical garden and its plant collection for the enjoyment and education of the public.

Duties and Responsibilities
The Garden Manager reports to the Board of Directors, and works closely with the Nursery Manager, the Garden Executive Director and the Garden Administrative Coordinator, to assure that the garden is carrying out its mission.
The Manager directs two part-time (3 days per week) gardeners, and a Plant Curator staff.
Hourly rate:  $25 hour.

General Duties

  • Oversee the management of the garden to assure quality of aesthetic display, plant vigor and interest. The GM is responsible for assessing the condition of plants and garden features, improving garden management practices and overseeing renovation of garden areas.
  • Continue bed renovation work begun in 2010, collaborating with the Curator to develop plans for the renovation of garden areas yet to be completed.
  • Oversee the operation and maintenance of irrigation system, garden structures, roads and parking facilities, paths, portable restroom facilities, and garden equipment and supplies.
  • Ensure proper safety precautions are being followed for all aspects of work in the garden including the operation of chainsaws and other equipment, pest and disease control application and ladder use.
  • Oversee winter cover maintenance, storage and installation.
  • Manage emergency situations including extra protection from freezes, damage from fallen limbs, and other problems as they arise.
  • Purchase materials and supplies for the garden and provide a monthly budget report.
  • Collaborate with Curator to assure that plants are propagated in the Greenhouse and Agave Garden for introduction into the garden.
  • Keep a prioritized list of projects that require funding to assist with grant writing.


  • Train and supervise garden staff, interns and volunteer gardeners.
  • Schedule and oversee work performed by contractors and consultants, such as arborists, irrigation specialists, landscape contractors.
  • Work at plant sales and related garden events.

Garden Manager Desirable Qualifications

  • Professional public garden management experience-highly desirable.
  • Possess basic carpentry and mechanical maintenance skills
  • Knowledge and interest in the botany and cultivation of arid land plants, including knowledge of plant science, soils, and cultivation requirements of cacti and succulents.
  • Degree in horticulture or related field preferred.
  • Experience with garden renovation.
  • Ability to supervise garden staff and volunteers.
  • Good stamina and strength, as this is a physically demanding job requiring a minimum of 24 hours a week gardening and working in a variety of weather conditions.
  • Sense of purpose and focus on completing tasks in a timely manner with consistent quality.
  • Ability to talk about and share the garden with visitors and teach short courses on general gardening topics to members.
  • The successful candidate will demonstrate good interpersonal skills and the ability to be a good team leader.

To Apply
Interested applicants should send cover letter and resume to:

Attn: Eileen Hansen, Administrative Coordinator
1552 Bancroft Road
Walnut Creek CA  94598
Fax:  (925) 256-1889
No phone calls, please.

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