At the Missouri Botanical Garden and Shaw Nature Reserve, we're committed to creating meaningful experiences for people that inspire a love of plants and passion to protect them and their vital role on Earth --and in this role, you'll contribute to the commitment
Summary: Provides guidance and expertise to promote appreciation of native plants and their use in residential and commercial horticultural landscapes. Engages with diverse partners to plan and implement outreach activities including lectures, workshops, written content, and professional consultations to provide native plant horticulture expertise in the regional community. Fosters relationships that support and grow the SNR Native Plant Horticulture Program. Contributes to the planning and execution of horticultural events and programs including SNR Wildflower Markets, Native Plant School, and other public outreach and community engagement activities. Serves as an actively-contributing senior staff member of the SNR horticulture program, honing and applying fine horticulture skills in the Whitmire Wildflower Garden and other horticultural areas of the Nature Reserve, which serve as demonstrations areas for visitors and participants in classes and workshops.
The right candidate will have a strong desire to continue developing their knowledge of native plant horticulture, sharing knowledge, expertise, and passion with landscape professionals and the public.
Essential Duties and Responsibilities:
- Contributes to the continued success and growth of the SNR Native Plant Horticulture Program as a prominent resource for native plant horticulture knowledge and the Whitmire Wildflower Garden as the premiere demonstration of native plant horticulture in the Midwestern United States.
- Collaborates with community partners (municipalities, businesses, non-profits, agencies, and others) to advance knowledge of native plant horticulture by conducting workshops and other presentations; Provides technical consultation on strategies and projects to advance the design, installation, and maintenance of native plant gardens and plant-based rainscaping techniques.
- Serves as a primary contact for the Native Plant Initiative, a cooperative agreement between the Missouri Department of Conservation and SNR, advancing shared objectives to build capacity for native plant horticulture practices that benefit regional conservation of flora and fauna.
- Ensures that objectives are met for the Native Plant Initiative of the MDC-SNR Cooperative Agreement, including coordination with contract consultants supported by the agreement and completing interim and annual reports of deliverables in accordance with reporting deadlines.
- Provides strategic planning for Native Plant School and other workshops and seminars while actively engaged in content and curriculum development and instruction.
- Creates written material including articles for local and regional print media, web content, social media, blogs, and other platforms; Provides interviews for print, radio, and TV media; Performs various outreach activities to advance awareness and knowledge of native plant horticulture.
- Contributes to the planning and execution of events and programs including Wildflower Markets and other public facing horticultural activities at Shaw Nature Reserve.
- Serves as an active and engaged member of the SNR horticulture team, honing and applying fine horticulture skills in the Whitmire Wildflower Garden and other horticultural areas of the Nature Reserve, which serve as demonstrations areas for general visitors and program participants.
- Performs horticultural work including propagation, planting, weeding, pruning, watering, path maintenance and invasive species control within horticultural areas of the Nature Reserve.
- Supports the SNR Horticulture Manager, taking a lead role as needed, with special projects in the Whitmire Wildflower Garden and other areas of horticultural emphasis within the Nature Reserve.
- Understands and utilizes the Living Collections Management System to manage and develop living collections, including conducting inventories and maintaining excellent plant records.
- Supports and fosters relationships with donors, foundations, and strategic partners. Assists with writing grants and other proposals as necessary.
- Leads tours for members, donors, strategic partners, public programs, and other guests to the Nature Reserve, serving as a primary resource and expert on native plant horticulture.
- Ensures that all applicable safety standards are followed (i.e., inform employees of safety rules and safe working practices and routinely monitor to enforce them. Adapts or modifies work methods to reduce hazards. Reports accidents and injuries.)
- Follows and adheres to established policies and procedures, including but not limited to Employee Handbook, Garden Safety Guidelines and Department Policies.
- Behaves and communicates in a manner that promotes and fosters a culture of teamwork and cooperation, within our division and throughout the Garden, with co-workers, supervisors/managers, volunteers, visitors and employees.
- Performs other duties as assigned.
Supervisory Responsibilities: Does not have direct staff reports; may supervise and mentor volunteers with the SNR Native Plant Horticulture Program.
- Communication: Combines listening skills, verbal and written communication skills and visitor relation skills.
- Collaboration: Incorporates teamwork, mutual respect, active engagement, cooperation and visitor focus.
- Accountability: Initiative to take ownership of responsibilities, the ability to prioritize and the working knowledge and skills to take action.
- Problem Solving: Blends problem solving skills, judgement and decision making skills along with creativity and resourcefulness.
- Stewardship: Merges the practical application of the Garden values and support for a positive organizational climate.
- Minimum of 3-5 years of relevant work experience with the practice of fine horticulture landscape design, and landscape maintenance.
- Strong interest in horticultural conservation and science; knowledge and experience with native plants, native plant communities, and native plant horticulture in the Midwestern US preferred.
- Excellent written and oral communication skills; exceptional ability to communicate effectively at all levels; must enjoy and feel comfortable interacting and working in close proximity to general public, in a safe and friendly manner, answering questions.
- Excellent public speaking skills; confident interacting with the media and diverse audiences.
- Strong initiative; proven track record of taking ownership of projects through successful completion required; coordinating multiple, concurrent projects and performing activities related to project planning, coordination, and leading subtasks of a major project required.
- Strong knowledge of propagation, production methods, and greenhouse operations and equipment.
- Excellent working knowledge of safe operation and use of landscaping equipment and herbicides.
- Scheduling flexibility that allows working occasional evenings, weekends, and holidays is required.
- Independent self-starter, creative, flexible, and possess the ability to effectively multi-task
- The Garden is committed to the safety and wellbeing of our employees, volunteers and guests. All staff are strongly encouraged to receive COVID-19 vaccinations by hire date, and the Garden reserves the right to require future proof of current vaccination status, based on community health department guidelines. When international travel is necessary for Garden business, staff must be able to obtain visas, vaccinations and immunizations for all countries where travel is required.
- The requirements and duties listed are representative and not exhaustive of the knowledge, skill, and/or abilities required.
- Bachelor’s degree in Horticulture, Biology, Botany, Ecology, Environmental Science, Education or related field preferred.
- Some college coursework in Horticulture, Ecology, or related fields, with an Associate’s degree or other relevant certification (e.g. Certificate of Proficiency in Horticulture) required.
- An equivalent combination of experience, skills, education, and experience may be considered.
- Proficiency with Microsoft Office suite (i.e., Word, Excel, Outlook).
- Ability to use e-mail to effectively communicate with colleagues, strategic partners, and other diverse collaborators and constituencies.
- Solid Internet research skills.
Other Skills and Abilities:
- Ability to work independently and as part of a team.
- Ability to manage several significant projects at once.
- Excellent organizational, time management and interpersonal skills.
- Scheduling flexibility that allows working weekends and holidays as needed.
- Speaks clearly and persuasively in positive or negative situations; listens and gets clarification; responds well to questions; is tactful and treats others with respect; values departmental teamwork.
- Ability to communicate effectively in English (oral and written).
- Ability to convey technical horticultural concepts to a general audience, both verbally and in writing.
- Communicates effectively with donors, strategic partners, and representatives of agencies, foundations, and other organizations.
- Excellent public speaking skills.
- Proficient college math aptitude - Requires ability to perform addition, subtraction, multiplication and division; calculate percentages and decimals, etc.
- Ability to understand and assist in developing project budgets.
- Requires ability to exercise independent judgment to apply facts and principles for developing approaches and techniques to problem resolution.
Certificates, Licenses, Registrations:
- Must possess and maintain a valid driver’s license and clean insurable driving record (prior to employment).
- Ability to obtain a pesticide applicators license within (6) months of hire date is required.
- Requires standing, walking, bending, stooping, and reaching for extended periods of time
- May be required to perform tasks at varying heights (i.e., climb step stools, etc.).
- Ability to utilize computer keyboard (typing); operating standard office equipment (computers, copiers and printers).
- Ability to lift and carry up to 50 lbs.
- Ability to wear Garden-issued Personal Protective Equipment.
- Ability to work outdoors in all weather conditions (i.e., in temperatures over 100°F as well as temperatures below 0°F, in rain, snow and other inclement weather conditions as needed).
- Comfortable working in immediate proximity to the general public, in a safe and friendly manner, answering questions regarding SNR programs.
- Must have access to transportation for off-site consultations, meetings, and outreach activities.
- Frequent off-site travel to meetings required.
Contacts with Individuals/Organizations inside/outside the Garden:
- Frequently works with representatives from the green industry, professional organizations, colleges and universities, municipalities, corporate partners, agencies, and other strategic partners.
- Participants in tours, classes, workshops, seminars, and landscape consultations
- Contacts for print, digital, radio, and television media
- Garden Employees, Volunteers, Donors, Visitors