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Seed Savers Exchange-Greenhouse Assistant-Wed, 10/16/2019 - 2:39pm

Greenhouse Assistant


Seed Savers Exchange
3094 N Winn Rd
Decorah , IA 52101

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Job Description 

Join the team at Heritage Farm!

For more than 43 years, Seed Savers Exchange, a non-profit, nationally-focused organization based in the Driftless Region on the outskirts of Decorah, Iowa (near where Wisconsin, Iowa and Minnesota converge on the Mississippi), has focused on conserving and promoting America's culturally diverse but endangered garden and food crop heritage for future generations. Seed Savers Exchange was a pioneer in the advocacy for preserving these heirloom varieties for generations to come, and is committed to keeping these varieties where they belong—in our gardens and on our tables.

Seed Savers Exchange is seeking a Greenhouse Assistant to join our team. This year-round position will support Seed Savers Exchange’s mission-driven work regenerating seeds and distributing heirloom seeds and plants. Responsibilities shift with the seasons and include propagating and regenerating seeds in the greenhouse and assisting with garden preparation (spring); ongoing seed regeneration, field maintenance, and seed harvesting and processing (summer and fall); and helping with seed and perishable-inventory testing and distribution (winter).

Duties & Responsibilities 

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

Greenhouse: March to mid-June
Sowing, watering, fertilizing, transplant maintenance in a greenhouse
Scouting for insects and diseases and releasing beneficial insects
Following organizational protocols to ensure genetic purity of accessions
Maintaining accurate records and data entry in a timely manner.

Field Work: Mid-June to November
Maintaining garden plots by transplanting, weeding (manual and mechanical), weed whipping, and harvesting crops
Mulching with hay, landscape fabric, etc.
Performing wet and dry seed harvesting and processing; this includes seed extraction, seed cleaning, threshing, winnowing, and conditioning
May be required to lead field crew on specific tasks and be a point person for field crew throughout the season
Other duties as assigned by the Field Manager.

Seed House: December to February
Support the needs of the Seed House by preparing and processing orders for shipment.
Pick orders, validate items/lot numbers, and pack into appropriate containers
Process shipments and accept seed into inventory using integrated shipping software.
Assist Inventory Manager with germination tests
Assist with packing, picking, and shipping potato, apple tree scions, garlic, and transplant orders.
Perform additional duties as directed by the Shipping or Seed House managers.

Education and Experience 

Physical Requirements:
Ability to work in varying weather conditions
Ability to stand, kneel, bend, and walk for long periods of time
Ability to lift at least 50 lbs alone or 100 lbs assisted.

One year greenhouse experience or work experience with organic vegetable, flower, and/or herb production preferred
Applicant must be an enthusiastic, detail-oriented, flexible team player.
Ability to keep accurate, detailed records in a fast paced work environment.
Applicants must have reliable transportation to and from work.
Applicants must have a valid driver’s license

Paid time off
Paid holidays
Employee merchandise discounts
Health care, retirement, and lifestyle benefits

Application Instructions 

Applications accepting through November 8, 2019.

Please email a cover letter, resumé, and the contact information for three references to - include the name of the position in the subject line of your email. Applications may also be mailed to: Seed Savers Exchange | Attn: Lynne Rilling | 3094 North Winn Rd. | Decorah, IA 52101.

Seed Savers Exchange is an equal opportunity employer and enthusiastically encourages people from a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences to apply. Seed Savers Exchange does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), gender identity, national origin, citizenship, age, mental or physical disability, veteran status, marital status, sexual orientation or any other basis prohibited by law.

Full Name 
Seed Savers Exchange