Employment TypeJob (Full-time)
Reporting to the Executive Director, the Head Gardener plays an integral role in establishing the Locust Grove Estate’s mission to ignite passion for exploration and invention by experiencing art, science, history, and nature through the lives of the many families that lived on the estate.
To ensure the thorough integration of the Horticulture department into the mission, goals, and objectives of the Estate, the applicant will be responsible for all aspects of management and long-term care of the Locust Grove Estate’s historic gardens and grounds. The Head Gardener is the sole staff person maintaining gardens at the estate, assisted by volunteers and interns.
$45,000 – $50,000/year depending on experience. Generous health insurance coverage, vacation leave, flexible schedule. Full-time (40 hours/week)
The Locust Grove Estate is a not-for-profit National Historic Landmark museum, education center, and public garden located in the heart of New York’s Hudson Valley. With 25 historic buildings on 250 acres of protected open space, and a modern visitor welcome center, the estate welcomes nearly 90,000 annual visitors. In the 1850s the estate was owned by artist and inventor Samuel Morse; by the 1890’s it was acquired by William and Martha Young. The Young’s daughter, Annette Young, lived at Locust Grove until her death in 1975, and created the not-for-profit museum to preserve the estate for the benefit of the public. Today the gardens and grounds reflect the many people who lived at worked at Locust Grove from the 1850s through the 1950s.
Duties & Responsibilities
● Plan, develop, implement, and maintain landscape gardens and grounds, including perennial, annual, and vegetable gardens, and landscape beds at the Visitor Center
● Develop annual budget and work plan for Horticulture Department
● Train, supervise, encourage, and assess garden volunteers, interns, and contractors
● Research, plan, implement, and document garden restoration projects
● Maintain and operate the Greenhouse
● Collaborate with professional staff to develop, organize, and implement horticulture programs, publications, and tours to increase site visitation and rentals through the use of the gardens and grounds
● Work closely with Executive Director and the Facilities team on grounds, building, and infrastructure needs
● Coordinate maintenance projects with Buildings and Grounds Manager
● Effectively work with and communicate with other staff, volunteers, and visitors.
Education and Experience
An experienced Head Gardener will play a leading role in the Locust Grove team. The applicant should possess a demonstrated knowledge of landscape maintenance practices and plant care with a record of managing resources in support of client events, budget planning, and collaboration across multiple disciplines to provide the premier expertise required for this year-round position.
Specific requirements include:
● Advanced degree preferred, preferably in a related field such as Horticulture, Plant Science, or Landscape Architecture. Continuing education in professional horticulture and gardening a plus
● A minimum of four years’ horticultural experience with in-depth knowledge of plant culture, garden and landscape maintenance/management, and identification
● Training and experience in horticultural best practices
● Widely versed and current in horticultural and botanical fields (e.g., pollinators, invasive plants, native plants, plant disease, Integrated Pest Management, etc.)
● Experience with construction management and the creation and renovation of gardens
● Thorough knowledge of pesticide regulations; NYSDEC Pesticide applicators license category 3A a plus.
● Ability to engage effectively with a wide variety of stakeholders, including donors, visitors, Board Members, staff and volunteers
● Ability to represent Locust Grove by leading tours and giving presentations for a variety of audiences
● Ability to work long hours, holidays, and weekends as necessary
● Demonstrated ability with computers, Microsoft software programs (Word/Excel/Outlook), social media platforms, and horticulture-related software
● Ability to operate electric equipment and power tools
● Team-player, willing to collaborate on all tasks required for maintaining the highest standards of landscape management and operations, programs, development, and communications
● Excellent oral and written communication skills
This job operates in outdoor weather conditions, as well as a professional environment. This role routinely uses standard office equipment such as computers, laptops, phones, mobile devices, photocopiers, filing cabinets and fax machines.
The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to do the following: climb ladders and lift weights up to 50 pounds, sit, stand, walk, talk and hear. The employee is required to reach with hands and arms; stoop, and kneel.
To apply, send a cover letter and CV/resume to Kenneth Snodgrass, Director, Locust Grove Estate, firstname.lastname@example.org.Application Deadline:
March 15, 2024