The Grounds Manager is responsible for supervising the work of the entire gardening crew and ensuring that maintenance and horticultural goals are met. This position entails extensive supervisory responsibilities. The Grounds Manager ensures that the aesthetics of displays, proper irrigation and cultural conditions for plantings and plant labels are adequately maintained. The Grounds Manager works with both the Volunteer Program Manager and gardeners to coordinate efforts of grounds volunteers. Maintains a designated section of the grounds or works alongside crew members in care of living collections, as a means of demonstrating and instructing gardening techniques. Good interpersonal skills and the ability to motivate staff to accomplish institutional goals are essential. This full-time (40 hours), exempt position reports to the Director of Horticulture. Onsite housing is available for this position.
• Supervise grounds staff: participate in hiring, training and promotion; conduct annual performance evaluations; make salary recommendations; provide commendation and/or discipline when required.
• Plan, schedule, coordinate, and monitor gardeners work, ensure adherence to Cal/OSHA standards, and provide required professional and safety training. Coordinate professional training opportunities for grounds staff.
• Ensure that the aesthetics of displays, the irrigation and cultural conditions for plantings, and plant labels are adequately maintained.
• Work with Horticulturalist to promote horticultural quality of the displays; ensure proper and timely application of fertilizers and pesticides; manage chipping, burning, and composting activities.
• Operate and program the central and sub-irrigation controllers.
• Conduct maintenance walks with Horticulturist and gardener to establish seasonal maintenance goals for each section. Oversee completion of work.
• Participate in planting walks and ensure appropriate and timely planting and placement of accession labels are achieved.
• Work with the Volunteer Program Manager and Horticulturist to recruit, train, and assign tasks for grounds volunteers; coordinate work with section gardeners.
• Serve as one of the staff liaisons to the Gardens and Horticulture Committee.
• May have the opportunity to offer classes and workshops on horticultural topics based on interest.
• Ensure Garden vegetation is maintained in a fire-safe manner; obtain annual Defensible Space clearance from Fire Department
• Manage annual grounds maintenance budget (materials, equipment, tools, labor) in consultation with Director of Horticulture and manage expenditures wisely.
• Bachelor's degree in Horticulture (may substitute more extensive work experience for formal education)
• Minimum of five years’ experience supervising grounds maintenance crew
Knowledge and Abilities:
• Skill in all aspects of general horticulture and care of California native plants including: planting, watering, weeding, pruning, fertilizing, soil amending, mulching, and monitoring pest populations
• Knowledge of proper operation of all necessary tools and equipment including: tractors, trucks, utility vehicles, chippers and shredders, compost tea brewer, sprayers, chain saws, blowers and hand tools
• Understanding of irrigation systems how to install, adjust, program, and maintain them
• Familiarity with botanical nomenclature and identification of California native plants
• Must have supervisory skills and be responsible for the performance of subordinates in completing assigned tasks
• Ability to interact well with others, work under pressure and meet deadlines, cooperate in a team environment
• Ability to communicate clearly and concisely, both verbally and in writing
• Computer proficiency including ability to use Microsoft Outlook, Excel, Word, and PowerPoint, and
to learn new computer programs as necessary
• Ability to work weekend shifts, as required
• Fluency in Spanish preferred
Submit resume and employment application. More information available at