Job Public Horticulture

Grounds Horticulturist

posted February 1, 2018
apply by March 15, 2018


Job Title Grounds Horticulturist

Department Living Collection and Grounds

Supervisor Curator

Salary Classification Full-time/non-exempt

Last Update of Job Description 1/30/2018

General Summary This position performs duties associated with maintaining the Arboretum’s living collection and grounds. This position participates as a member of the living collections team and contributes to the development of the Arboretum’s living collection.

Primary Responsibilities

• Grounds and Facilities Maintenance
o Perform duties associated with caring for the Arboretum’s diverse living collection including but not limited to planting, pruning, and tree removal.
o Perform duties associated with maintaining the Arboretum’s grounds to the standards detailed in the Arboretum’s Landscape Management Plan currently in development including lawn care, weeding, mulching, watering, leaf clean-up, and invasive species removal.
o Contribute to integrated pest management IPM efforts, particularly mitigation of deer damage.
o Participate in arboriculture activities including risk assessment, climbing, cabling, pruning and removal of large trees
o Follow protocols for the maintenance and management of the Arboretum’s natural lands and trail system.
o Coordinate mowing and brush-chipping activities with local contractors
o Assist with the Arboretum’s composting program and bulk materials area.
o Assist in service and repair of all grounds machines and equipment.
o Assist in the maintenance and troubleshooting of Arboretum buildings, facilities and infrastructure including but not limited to minor repairs, snow removal, maintenance of paths and driveways, maintenance of stone walls, and scheduled seasonal duties.

• Programs, events and visitor support
o Engage with visitors in a professional & helpful way to enhance their experience, perception, and appreciation of the Arboretum.
o Lead tours of Arboretum for specialized groups or regularly scheduled tours as needed or requested.
o Develop and teach educational classes and workshops on a regular basis
o Assist with Arboretum events as required

• Professional Development
o Attend professional meetings, workshops, and seminars as appropriate to landscape and grounds maintenance.
o Maintain certification as a licensed Massachusetts pesticide applicator.
o Maintain awareness of current research, practices and equipment relevant to landscape and grounds maintenance.
o Develop and maintain cooperative professional relationships with public garden and green industry colleagues.

• Interns & Volunteers
o Participate in the hiring process of interns
o Teach, train, direct activities of and engage with interns to provide a meaningful educational experience.
o Train, supervise and work with grounds volunteers and, with volunteer coordinator, identify needs and recruit volunteers as needed.

• PHA Work Environment
o Fully engage with staff, interns and volunteers and, through effective communication and professional behavior, help to maintain a positive, respectful and progressive work environment.
o Maintain an active and engaged interest in all PHA activities and programs.
o Develop a thorough understanding of PHA’s history and mission and how its programs and activities support the mission and the Arboretum’s relevance to the communities with which it is engaged.

Job descriptions are guidelines that attempt to characterize major duties and responsibilities of employees. These duties are subject to change as needs and programs change. At The Polly Hill Arboretum they are not considered either inclusive or exclusive. It is anticipated that up to 20% of your job responsibilities will change annually.

Minimum Qualifications

• Associates degree and /or 3 years related professional experience in landscape/grounds maintenance minimum .
• Knowledge of and experience with all aspects of grounds maintenance.
• Proven ability to work effectively as part of a team that includes staff, interns and volunteers
• Proven ability to effectively communicate verbally and in writing
• Proficient with the safe operation and proper maintenance and repair of hand tools, power equipment and tractors/skid-steers.
• Basic knowledge of trees and shrubs, including a familiarity with scientific names.
• Massachusetts pesticide applicators license, or ability to obtain within one year of hire
• Experience with arboriculture safety, climbing, pruning , or willingness to learn
• Ability to work outside in a variety of weather conditions and the ability to lift a minimum of 50 lbs. The ability to walk, kneel, bend, stoop, sit, crouch, drive vehicles, and climb ladders.
• Willingness to lead tours, conduct workshops and actively participate in the Arboretum’s educational programs
• Must possess a valid driver’s license
• A passion for working in a public garden setting and a genuine interest to continually learn and develop as a horticulturist

Wages, Salary and Benefits

Work Schedule This position is full-time, 35 hours per week and generally Monday – Friday, 8 00-3 30. Weekend duty is assigned on a rotational basis. Emergency situations and participation in special events may be required beyond this schedule. Weekly hours in excess of 35 must be pre-approved by supervisor or in response to an emergency situation.

Application Requirements

To apply please submit a cover letter, resume, and contact information for three professional references to or by mail to Polly Hill Arboretum, PO Box 561, West Tisbury, MA 02575, Attn Todd Rounsaville.

The closing date for this position is March 15, 2018.


Todd Rounsaville, or 508-693-9426