Duration: 3 - 4 months, starting in May or June
Hours: 40 hours/week
Number available: 1
Application deadline: February 24, 2019
Olbrich Botanical Gardens is a nationally recognized public display garden located in Madison, Wisconsin - a city recognized for its innovation and livability. The gardens include 16 acres of outdoor display gardens and an indoor, tropical conservatory with supporting greenhouses. Olbrich offers a unique opportunity for individuals possessing a passion for the world of public horticulture to learn more about a future career in public gardens, and more specifically, working in a landscape under glass.
Interns work directly with Olbrich staff in the Bolz Conservatory and greenhouses to gain a practical understanding of what it takes to maintain a living collection in a conservatory setting. Individuals will learn all aspects of environmentally responsible horticulture and sustainable practices during the course of the internship and are immersed in innovative conservatory and production greenhouse plant maintenance practices.
Interns work in all areas of plant maintenance in the Bolz Conservatory and will work with aroids, ferns, orchids and other plants in over 80 families. Interns also work in the supporting greenhouses (which are currently located offsite due to construction of new greenhouses) and plant production including annuals, poinsettias, mums and asters. Interns will also gain experience with the operation of our summer annual Blooming Butterflies event. One to two paid field trips to other conservatories and greenhouses are included. New for this year, our Intern will conduct a project that focuses in an area of their choosing as long as it is pertinent to the operations and collections within the conservatory and greenhouses.
Candidates interested in working with a creative, fun and hard-working team of professional horticulturists, and dedicated volunteers, should submit an application, resume, letter of interest, and questionnaire. Incomplete submittals will not be considered for an internship. Preferred applicants will be enrolled or graduated (within 6 months) from a horticulture or related program. If you do not meet those criteria, applicants are still encouraged to apply. We would prefer and on-site interview for applicants who are close enough. Skype and video conference interviews are an option for long-distance applicants.
Rental housing is available in the area, especially near the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus, which is located nearby. Frequently, housing (work-for-rent exchange) is available with host families. Priority is given on a first come, first serve basis. Assistance in the form of providing the necessary contacts can be provided from Olbrich Staff if a host family is desired. Reliable transportation is also need to get from Olbrich to our offsite growing facility.
Internship Essential Functions
• Ability to lift up to 50 pounds unaided.
• Ability to work in warm and humid conditions.
• Ability to bend, stoop, kneel and work with arms stretched out overhead.
• Ability to work between the hours of 7 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
• Ability to work a five-day per week schedule including possible weekend days (for example: Sunday through Thursday, or Tuesday through Saturday).
• Ability to maintain adequate attendance and work holidays when scheduled.
• Ability to work in environments where pesticides have previously been applied (after expiration of mandated prohibited re-entry period).
• Ability to understand and follow oral and written instructions.
• Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships and communicate effectively to work as a team with the staff and volunteers.
• Ability to be tactful and courteous with garden visitors and children.
• Ability to perform heavy manual and semi-skilled tasks for extended periods of time.
• Ability to work with animals, such as birds, fish, and butterflies that are maintained in the Conservatory.
• Ability to use hand tools, pruners, and watering hoses typically used in routine greenhouse and conservatory maintenance.
• Application Form – found on Olbrich’s website
• Letter of Interest
• Questionnaire – found on Olbrich’s website
Submit your application packet by February 24 via e-mail, fax or mail to:
Colten Blackburn, Conservatory Curator
Olbrich Botanical Gardens
3330 Atwood Avenue
Madison, WI 53704
FAX: (608) 246-4719