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Category: Horticulture

Waterford, Connecticut

Posted: Thursday, August 7, 2014





Job Posting No. 108957                               Application Closing Date: September 2, 2014              Full-time Permanent Position

Annual Salary:         $42,416 - $55,255  (New hires to State service will start at the minimum of the salary range.)

HARKNESS MEMORIAL STATE PARK is the 200+ acre estate of Edward and Mary Harkness in Waterford, CT, on the shore of Long Island Sound.  Awarded the Millennium Medallion Award by the American Society of Landscape Architects and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Harkness mansion is set among stately trees and grounds and surrounded by spectacular botanical gardens.  The gardens blend heirloom plantings with Mrs. Harkness’ collection of historic Asian statuary, and the historical corridor of the park encompasses a wide range of native and ornamental specimen trees.  The gardens have been largely restored to their original, early twentieth century designs drawn by James Gamble Rogers and Beatrix Farrand, an original founder of the American Society of Landscape Architects, and the later design by Marian Coffin, whose work includes the gardens at Winterthur and Gibraltar in Delaware.  The Harkness gardens include Italian, Asian, alpine rock, boxwood parterre, cutting, and reference gardens, along with many other formal floral beds and planted containers.  The newly restored Lord and Burnham greenhouse houses an original grapery, fish pond, and potting shed.  Its state of the art, computerized mechanical system allows the propagation of unique plant stock, annuals, and signature heliotrope grown for the park grounds and gardens.  A popular wedding site and concert venue, the park is host to 250,000 visitors annually and enjoys the benefits of a large “friends” volunteer organization.  It is also a participating member of the Connecticut Historic Garden Group.


DUTIES The HORTICULTURIST/AGRICULTURAL WORKER 2 will be responsible for the care and maintenance of the historic Harkness park grounds, gardens, greenhouse, and other plantings, as well as the propagation of rare heirloom cultivars, based on historic plans and research. Duties will include leading and directing seasonal and permanent staff and coordinating the volunteers who assist in the gardens; leading and directing all aspects of propagation of historically appropriate plants; plant disease identification and appropriate treatment to ensure survival of plants; operation and management of a historic greenhouse with complex climate control, irrigation, and lighting systems; implementation of landscape architecture blueprints and plans; research to restore gardens accurately and to source appropriate historic plants; directing appropriate plant placement, installation and aftercare in garden beds; planning, leading, and directing appropriate pruning and fertilization schedules; directing appropriate year-round care for historic trees, shrubs, vines, roses, perennials and annuals on the 400 acre property; interacting successfully with the public touring the gardens to provide accurate information about the plantings, design, and history of the landscape; may be required to present historical garden information and tours to the media, garden groups, researchers, and the general public; and other duties as required.


ELIGIBILITY Candidates must have three (3) years of experience in plant science or general labor related to the culture and propagation of plants and trees.  Substitutions allowed: college training in plant science, horticulture, or a related field may be substituted for the General Experience on the basis of fifteen (15) semester hours equaling one-half (1/2) year of experience to a maximum of two (2) years for an Associate's degree. 


SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS  The incumbent must have and maintain a current driver’s license; may be required to obtain and maintain, within six months of notice, a pesticide applicators license, arborist license, and/or other relevant licenses or certificates; and may occasionally be required to work evenings and weekends.


PREFERED CRITERIA The preferred candidate will have excellent interpersonal and oral and written communication skills and the ability to work well with the public; considerable knowledge of plant science and experience with methods used in the culture and propagation of both heirloom and contemporary plants, trees, and flowers; knowledge of and experience with historic landscape design, heirloom plantings, and garden restoration practices; ability to read, interpret and implement planting plans; substantial experience organizing, directing, and implementing onsite installation and maintenance of trees, plants, vines, planters, and formal lawn areas; ability to determine the best methods and procedures to assure the successful propagation and growth of rare cultivars; experience operating year round greenhouse production; ability to operate and maintain a wide variety of landscape equipment and machinery, from basic hand tools to heavy equipment; and experience leading or directing agricultural or botanical workers.


APPLICATION INSTRUCTIONS To be considered for this position, candidates who meet the Eligibility criteria above must submit a cover letter, resume, and Application for Employment ( to be received no later than the Closing Date above.  Current State employees must also include copies of their two most recent performance appraisals.  (Incomplete packages will not be considered.) Submit the application materials by fax, email, or USPS to:

Department of Energy and Environmental Protection

Human Resources Division
79 Elm Street, Hartford, CT 06106-5127
Attn:  Marilyn Stone

fax: (860) 424-3896

Note:  This position will be filled in accordance with State of CT reemployment, SEBAC, transfer, promotion, and merit employment rules.


The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection is an Affirmative Action and Equal Opportunity Employer that is committed to complying with the Americans with Disabilities Act. To request an accommodation contact us at (860) 418-5910 or

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