Job Listing: Section Horticulturist

Job Postings,

Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens - Richmond, VA

Closes - open until filled

Position Title - Section Horticulturist

Salary - $22-25/hour

Job Type - full-time; exempt

Apply: Please send cover letter and resume to

Summary - The Horticulture Section Leader reports to the Vice President (VP) of Horticulture as part of a team of three to four horticulture section leaders who support departmental administration, finance, and planning. Under the VP’s guidance, they develop all implementation measures and schedules and execute horticultural aspirations, goals, and objectives for the Garden and the Lewis Ginter Nature Reserve. They develop a strong team of horticultural professionals by investing in the training, support and development of their staff and volunteers while acknowledging the integrity of the gardens presented is directly connected to the passion of the team maintaining them. This specific Horticulture Section Leader position includes leadership of the Garden’s irrigation system. 

Job Responsibilities:


  • Oversees designated Horticulture Section and its assigned staff and volunteers, while ensuring work aligns with organizational goals and core values.
  • Supports daily work in Garden section by leading a diverse team. This includes interviewing, hiring, training, supervising, and performance assessment, with the ability to, coach, counsel, and transition staff.
  • Promote, celebrate, and model professional development for Department members.
  • Serve as a member of the Horticulture Departmental Leadership Team.
  • Collaborates with the Director of Volunteers for volunteer engagement and collaboration with corporate volunteer groups.
  • Schedules, plans, and implements strategies for the short-term and long-term evolution of Garden section to reflect dynamic programming within the Garden, advancement of collections, and aesthetic beauty.
  • Collaborate across departments within the Garden and serves on relevant committees.
  • Assists VP of Horticulture with planning, budgeting, coordinating, and purchasing for staffing and resources for respective Garden Section.

 Horticulture, Collections, Design and Display

  • Works daily to support and maintain a diverse planting of annuals, perennials, tropical, woody and edible plants through pruning, grooming, weeding, mulching, watering, fertilizing, and scouting.
  • Diligently lead in sustainable Integrated Pest Management (IPM) strategies including biological, mechanical, and cultural controls. Coordinate scouting and control treatments with IPM Horticulturist.
  • Interact with the public on an informal basis by answering questions, providing directions, etc. 
  • Safe and correct use of Garden tools and equipment.
    • Utilize shovels, trowels, fan rakes, grading rakes, spades, digging forks, pickaxes, brooms, hand shears, hand saws, loppers, pole pruners & pole saws, wheelbarrows, fertilizer spreaders, garden carts, ladders, and other hand tools to complete assigned tasks.
    • Operate push mowers, weed-whackers, backpack blowers, push blowers, garden ATVs, tractors, pickup trucks, and other power equipment in accordance with LGBG safety protocols and regulatory standards (training will be provided).
  • Work collaboratively with a dynamic team to achieve horticultural standards of excellence.
    • Participate in weekly group maintenance tasks such as blowing walkways, filling gas cans, and caring for tools and equipment.
    • Participate in group projects and meetings with other horticulture staff and in cross-departmental projects.
  • Serves as the point of contact and responsible party for Garden’s current and future irrigation system.
    • Leads communication with Garden contracted resources for irrigation design, installation, maintenance and repair.
    • Serves as liaison for Horticulture department for irrigation troubleshooting.
    • Works collaboratively across organizational departments to communicate irrigation in relation to programming.
  • Must be available to work evenings, weekends, and occasional holidays, ensuring coverage for Horticulture outside the traditional work week/day.
  • Perform other duties as assigned by the VP of Horticulture or their designee.

Skills & Abilities

  • Knowledge of and experience with landscape practices and plant care appropriate to the region.
  • Strong work ethic, keen interest in Horticulture, and an enthusiasm for physical work outdoors.
  • A demonstrated understanding of the horticultural practices and procedures required for soil preparation, planting & transplanting, mulching, watering, weeding, fertilizing, pruning, propagating, mowing, raking, sweeping & blowing, and tree & brush cutting.
  • The ability to use shovels, trowels, fan rakes, grading rakes, spades, digging forks, pickaxes, brooms, hand shears, hand saws, loppers, pole pruners & pole saws, wheelbarrows, fertilizer spreaders, garden carts, ladders, and other hand tools effectively.
  • Demonstrated experience working with and managing irrigation technologies.
  • The ability to operate push mowers, riding mowers, string trimmers, backpack blowers, push blowers, garden UTVs, pickup trucks, chainsaws and other power equipment safely and effectively.
  • The ability to follow written and verbal instructions

Physical Demands/Working Conditions:

  • The physical strength, dexterity, and coordination sufficient to perform the above functions.
  • Must be able to bend, squat, kneel, stand and walk for extended periods of time.
  • Must be able to work out-of-doors in Central Virginia seasonal extremes.
  • Must be able to lift 50 pounds repeatedly.

Note: Duties described above, other duties and physical demands have been identified as essential functions as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Education and Experience

  • A degree in Horticulture, Botany, Plant Science, or a related field.
  • Five years of experience working in public gardens, parks or arboreta.
  • 1 year of experience working with a large-scale irrigation system
  • Virginia Pesticide Applicator’s License (or the ability to obtain one within six months of hire).
  • Possession of a valid driver's license.
  • Other combinations of education/experience appropriate to the job will be considered.
  • Proficiency in conversational Spanish desired.

Each Employee of Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden:

  • Must comply with provisions of the current Employee handbook, all published personnel policies and the requirements of their individual job descriptions.
  • Must perform all duties in a manner consistent with a public garden serving multigenerational and multicultural individuals, families, and in accordance with directed practices and procedures.
  • Must be aware of surroundings and vigilant to threats to the safety of visitors, volunteers, and staff or to security of their property, ensuring that all concerns are reported promptly.
  • Must report all injuries and incidents immediately and ultimately in writing to supervisor(s) and to Human Resources.
  • Must ensure compliance with all applicable federal and state laws and regulations.
  • Must perform other duties as assigned by supervisor.