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Head Gardener
Category: Horticulture

Royal Botanical Gardens
Hamilton/Burlington, Ontario

Posted: Monday, September 9, 2013

Head Gardener


Royal Botanical Gardens (RBG) is the largest botanical garden in Canada and one of the largest in the world. With over 2,700 acres of cultivated gardens and nature preserves it is also one of the biggest urban nature sanctuaries and marshland restoration sites in North America. With its extraordinary land holdings, breathtaking landscapes, bio-diversity, collections, facilities, educational and conservation programs, RBG is a top rated regional tourist attraction and a global leader in its sector.    

We seek a Head Gardener for our famous Rock Garden, which is currently undergoing a multi-million dollar rejuvenation. The unique timing of this opportunity will allow the Head Gardener to participate in bringing the vision to reality and collaborate in the creation of a very high-profile tourist destination.



  • Under the direction of the Manager of Gardens (with input from the Head of Horticulture) maintains and develops plant collections, display gardens, special exhibits and other landscaped areas.
  • Manages and supports assigned Gardeners, Student Gardeners, temporary staff and other volunteers, and ensures that proper horticultural practices are employed in the safe and efficient performance of their duties.
  • Interprets implements and contributes to landscape plans prepared for garden renovation and development.
  • Participates in the acquisition and propagation of plants for collections, displays and seasonal exhibits, as well as any experimental or botanical research projects.
  • Assists the Manager of Gardens/Head of Horticulture in technical and planning work related to garden operations within the assigned work area.
  • Performs all the duties of Gardener as required.
  • Keeps curatorial and plant documentation records, work reports and other records as required in the performance of assigned duties.
  • Reports daily attendance for assigned employees to the Gardens Manager
  • Performs other job-related duties assigned by the Manager, including snow removal, physical plant maintenance and preventative maintenance on tools and equipment.
  • Ensures a clean and safe work environment at all times.  Adheres to all safety rules, policies and procedures and wears all required personal protective equipment.


  • Post-secondary school diploma in Horticulture or closely related field from a recognized college or university.
  • An excellent working knowledge of botanical horticulture and the broad range of plants typically found in RBG’s unique exterior garden areas.
  • Knowledge of cultural requirement of the above plants is a necessity.
  • Demonstrated ability in proper horticultural practices, pest and disease identification and mitigation, landscape construction and in utilizing the equipment necessary to perform these tasks. 
  • Five years’ experience in professional horticulture.
  • Good oral and written communication skills.
  • Demonstrated leadership and organizational ability and experience in directing staff.
  • Valid class “G” Ontario Driver’s License.


Qualified candidates may forward a copy their resume and cover letter to:  Human Resources Officer via email at  or fax (905) 577-0375.   Competition closes September 23, 2013. 

Only those applicants selected for an interview will be contacted.  RBG is an equal opportunity employer.

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