Employment at the Garden

Horticulturist, the Greenhouses

Job Status:
Requisition Number:
The Greenhouses
Reports to:
Senior Horticulturist, the Greenhouses
volunteers and seasonals
Provide an attractive area consisting of the Greenhouses for the education and enjoyment of visitors. Work with horticulture staff and staff in other departments to plan for, install, and maintain indoor changing exhibits such as the Orchid Show. The workweek will include one weekend day and occasional holidays. This is a year-round full-time position with a schedule of 6:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Duties and Responsibilities:

In this role you will be responsible for the following: 

  • Maintain plants in the Greenhouses, Regenstein Center, Barbara Carr Administrative Center, Daniel F. and Ada L. Rice Plant Conservation Science Center, and the Garden View Cafe through watering, pruning, planting, grooming, fertilizing, removing debris, weeding, dead heading, repotting, applying pesticides, implementing the bio control program, maintaining and inventorying tools and cleaning glass. Assist with white washing the greenhouses. Assist Display Gardens staff with snow removal.
  • Install and maintain plants in temporary, changing exhibits such as The Orchid Show. Respond to plant requests for events requiring podium plants and centerpieces.
  • Water bonsai on days the Curator of Bonsai is out of the office.
  • Assist the Senior Horticulturist, the Greenhouses with developing designs, selecting and ordering plants for changing exhibits.
  • Work with the Plant Collections team to develop, display, and document collections plants in the Greenhouses including new accessions, removals, transfers and label requirements for display plants. Label plant material in a timely manner and assist with installing accession tags.
  • Serve as a horticultural resource for the Garden by teaching for the School of the Botanic Garden, leading tours, writing articles, giving demonstrations and media interviews, answering visitor and staff questions and serving on planning teams.
  • Cooperate with the Senior Horticulturist to develop and maintain a smooth and efficiently run volunteer program. Identify volunteer needs, recruit, train and provide instruction for assignments. Support Corporate Volunteer program.
  • Inform the Senior Horticulturist, The Greenhouses of disease, insect, animal and weed problems.
  • Maintain a good level of computer literacy for purposes of interdepartmental documentation and communication.

Key Garden competencies/behaviors desired:

  • Communicates in a manner that gains the trust and support of others at all levels.
  • Works effectively with others despite differences of opinion and style; builds alliances.
  • Has a tolerance for opposing points of view.
  • Strives for collaboration. Works cooperatively, as a positive contributor to the team.
  • Demonstrates a positive attitude and shows kindness in all workplace interactions.
  • Makes decisions appropriate for level of responsibility.
  • Can effectively adapt to change; can shift gears comfortably; is flexible, and embraces change with a “can-do” attitude.
  • Is self-aware; knows personal strengths and weaknesses; seeks feedback and is open to negative feedback as an opportunity for improvement.
  • Is cool under pressure; can be counted on to hold things together during tough times; can handle stress; is not knocked off balance by the unexpected; is a settling influence during a crisis.
  • Recognizes problems, constructively identifies and articulates solutions.
  • Picks up garbage when it is seen regardless of position.
  • Follows safety guidelines to ensure a safe working environment and consistently demonstrates safe work behaviors.
  • Is welcoming of new hires.

Our ideal candidate will have:

  • Associates degree in horticulture or commensurate experience.
  • Good written and verbal communication skills.
  • A valid Illinois pesticide applicator’s license or ability to obtain one upon hiring.
  • A valid driver’s license and be insurable by the garden.

*The Chicago Botanic Garden requires all existing employees to be fully COVID-19 vaccinated by October 15, 2021; hires after this date must be fully vaccinated upon hire or may request a medical/religious exemption after an offer is extended.*



Apply for Horticulturist, the Greenhouses using the link below:

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Physical Demands:
Must be able to lift, push, pull and carry items up to 50 pounds. Be comfortable working on step ladders and extension ladders while maintaining plants and white washing the greenhouses.
Why Apply?:

Come work in a setting that is like no other as you support our mission: We cultivate the power of plants to sustain and enrich life. Take the first step toward being one of the employees who make the Garden one of the treasures of the Forest Preserves of Cook County. Apply today. Please note that applicants who do not meet the required qualifications will not be considered.

Disclaimer: The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this classification. They are not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities and qualifications required of personnel so classified.

The Chicago Botanic Garden is a M/F, Disabled, and Vet EEO/AA Employer.

We are an Equal Opportunity Employer and do not discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment because of race, color, sex, age, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, status as a veteran, and basis of disability or any other federal, state or local protected class.

In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972, the Chicago Botanic Garden does not discriminate on the basis of sex in its programs or activities, including in employment or admissions. Please call (847) 835-8264 to contact our Title IX coordinator should you have questions or concerns.