Horticulturist Career

Job Description: Plan, organize, direct, control, and coordinate activities of workers engaged in propagating, cultivating, and harvesting horticultural specialties, such as trees, shrubs, flowers, mushrooms, and other plants.

*A job as a Horticulturist falls under the broader career category of Nursery and Greenhouse Managers. The information on this page will generally apply to all careers in this category. We are still seeking more specific information about this career from experts in this field. If you can provide us with more information, .

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Horticulturist Career

What Horticulturists do:

  • Tour work areas to observe work being done, to inspect crops, and to evaluate plant and soil conditions.
  • Inspect facilities and equipment for signs of disrepair, and perform necessary maintenance work.
  • Explain and enforce safety regulations and policies.
  • Identify plants as well as problems such as diseases, weeds, and insect pests.
  • Coordinate clerical, recordkeeping, inventory, requisitioning, and marketing activities.
  • Determine plant growing conditions, such as greenhouses, hydroponics, or natural settings, and set planting and care schedules.
  • Assign work schedules and duties to nursery or greenhouse staff, and supervise their work.
  • Manage nurseries that grow horticultural plants for sale to trade or retail customers, for display or exhibition, or for research.
  • Hire employees, and train them in gardening techniques.
  • Apply pesticides and fertilizers to plants.
  • Prepare soil for planting, and plant or transplant seeds, bulbs, and cuttings.
  • Determine types and quantities of horticultural plants to be grown, based on budgets, projected sales volumes, and/or executive directives.
  • Select and purchase seeds, plant nutrients, disease control chemicals, and garden and lawn care equipment.
  • Provide information to customers on the care of trees, shrubs, flowers, plants, and lawns.
  • Position and regulate plant irrigation systems, and program environmental and irrigation control computers.
  • Cut and prune trees, shrubs, flowers, and plants.
  • Confer with horticultural personnel in order to plan facility renovations or additions.
  • Construct structures and accessories such as greenhouses and benches.
  • Graft plants.
  • Negotiate contracts such as those for land leases or tree purchases.

What work activities are most important?

Importance Activities

Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.

Thinking Creatively - Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.

Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates - Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.

Coordinating the Work and Activities of Others - Getting members of a group to work together to accomplish tasks.

Scheduling Work and Activities - Scheduling events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.

Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work - Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.

Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.

Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings - Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.

Judging the Qualities of Things, Services, or People - Assessing the value, importance, or quality of things or people.

Coaching and Developing Others - Identifying the developmental needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or otherwise helping others to improve their knowledge or skills.

Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships - Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.

Analyzing Data or Information - Identifying the underlying principles, reasons, or facts of information by breaking down information or data into separate parts.

Training and Teaching Others - Identifying the educational needs of others, developing formal educational or training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.

Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material - Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.

Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards - Using relevant information and individual judgment to determine whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.

Staffing Organizational Units - Recruiting, interviewing, selecting, hiring, and promoting employees in an organization.

Monitoring and Controlling Resources - Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money.

Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.

Selling or Influencing Others - Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions.

Developing and Building Teams - Encouraging and building mutual trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.

Estimating the Quantifiable Characteristics of Products, Events, or Information - Estimating sizes, distances, and quantities; or determining time, costs, resources, or materials needed to perform a work activity.

Interpreting the Meaning of Information for Others - Translating or explaining what information means and how it can be used.

Communicating with Persons Outside Organization - Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.

Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others - Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.

Documenting/Recording Information - Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

Developing Objectives and Strategies - Establishing long-range objectives and specifying the strategies and actions to achieve them.

Processing Information - Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or verifying information or data.

Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment - Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.

Performing Administrative Activities - Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.

Handling and Moving Objects - Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

Controlling Machines and Processes - Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).

Assisting and Caring for Others - Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.

Interacting With Computers - Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

Performing General Physical Activities - Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.

Provide Consultation and Advice to Others - Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups on technical, systems-, or process-related topics.

Repairing and Maintaining Mechanical Equipment - Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of mechanical (not electronic) principles.

Performing for or Working Directly with the Public - Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.

Holland Code Chart for a Horticulturist

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