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Celebrating 50 Years of Adventure
The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens, Wonderfully Wild. The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens, Wonderfully Wild.

Job Title: Collections Gardener I

Department: Garden

Exemption: Non-Exempt

Reports to: Gardens Supervisor

Supervises: Volunteers

Position Summary:

Performs general grounds and garden maintenance of assigned areas.


Specific Tasks:

· Perform daily maintenance of assigned gardens and grounds including planting, pruning, trimming, raking, watering, weeding, and fertilizing and observes and monitors plants to recognize and distinguish problems.

· Perform routine visual inspection of all assigned areas

· Perform various landscaping and design activities to enhance the appearance of assigned gardens and landscaped areas.

· Clean cement pathways and patios on a predetermined basis.

· Remove litter, debris, and trash from gardens, pathways, and grounds.

· Maintain and repair irrigation systems; design and install irrigation systems.

· Trims pathways and service roads of protruding branches to ensure visitor and employee safety.

· Installs or repairs split rail fencing and plant identification tiles as directed.

· Follows plans and instructions for construction and installation of new gardens and landscapes including soil contouring, rock placement, irrigation, and planting.

· Assist Curator of Gardens and Garden Registrar in maintaining plant inventory and records; maintain daily record of important garden activities such as planting, plant removal, and other non-routine tasks.

· Analyze work orders to determine material required and method to complete the task; requisitions materials.

· Utilize a wide array of tools and equipment including shovels, rakes, pruners, clippers, picks, pry bars, hand saws, chain saw, gas leaf blower, and other equipment.

· Operate Living Desert vehicles and equipment including trucks, tractors, bobcat, medium to heavy equipment, and electric carts.

· Interact courteously and effectively with public at all times and represent the institution in the highest standard of professionalism.

· Establish and maintain effective and professional working relations with co-workers and personnel from other departments in accordance with The Living Desert Employee Handbook.

· Provide assistance to other departments as needed and perform other related tasks as necessary to accomplish department objectives.

This class specification should not be interpreted as all inclusive. It is intended to identify the major responsibilities and requirements of this job. The employee may be requested to perform job-related responsibilities and tasks other than those stated in this specification.

Equipment Used:

Electric cart, general office equipment, miscellaneous electric and gas-powered tools and hand tools, standard gardening tools, telephone, two-way radio, and vehicles and heavy equipment including trucks, bobcat, backhoe, and tractor.

Specific Skills:

· A broad knowledge of horticulture/botanical terminology, practices, methods, tools, materials and equipment used in grounds and landscape maintenance.

· Pesticide safety and use

· Good observation skills

· Must have strong organizational skills

· Ability to record observations intelligently

· Ability to give and comprehend oral and written instructions, and to carry-out such instructions

· Ability to communicate clearly and concisely both orally and in writing

· Must be a motivated self-started who needs minimal supervision

· Ability to work and communicate well with others in a team setting

Physical Position Description:

ESSENTIAL PHYSICAL TASKS: Standing, walking, bending, lifting, twisting, climbing, crawling, kneeling, and reaching. Lifting up to 50 lbs.

TYPICAL WORKING CONDITIONS: Work outdoors with exposure to extreme heat, chemicals, and dust/airborne materials. Work with and in close proximity to medium to heavy equipment.

HOLIDAY/EVENING WORK: Weekend and holiday work required. Some evenings may be required during special events.

TRAVEL: Conference or workshop attendance available. Visitation of other zoos, botanic gardens, or botanically represented geographical areas available. If funding available, some or all expenses paid.


MINIMUM EDUCATION/CERTIFICATION REQUIRED: AA or AS degree or higher in horticulture, botany or plant science; course work in entomology, soils, irrigation, pest management.

MINIMUM EXPERIENCE REQUIRED: Minimum of two years experience in grounds and park maintenance.

SKILLS REQUIRED: Must be energetic with good communication skills and be willing to work with others in a team setting.

OTHER: Must hold a California driver’s license and be insurable on The Living Desert’s automobile insurance policy.

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