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Spring Meadow Nursery Inc.-New Product Development Assistant Manager-Horticulture -Mon, 11/04/2019 - 11:33am

New Product Development Assistant Manager-Horticulture


Spring Meadow Nursery Inc.
12601 120th Avenue Grand Haven
Grand Haven , MI 49417

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Job Description 

Do you know a good plant when you see one? Have you longed for the opportunity to bring superior new varieties to the market? Is sharing your passion for plants with the world one of your top career goals? We want to hear from you! Spring Meadow Nursery is seeking a passionate, plant-savvy horticulture professional to help us continue to change the way people think about flowering shrubs. This position will work with breeders around the world to find, evaluate, and introduce new woody ornamentals under the Proven Winners ColorChoice brand. Be a part of the team that introduced ‘Limelight’ hydrangea and Wine & Roses weigela to North America!

The New Product Development Assistant Manager will develop, conduct, and maintain ongoing plant evaluations to determine potential new plant introductions. This position will maintain and develop relationships with breeders world-wide, updating them regularly on the progress of their plants in the trials stage, and on sales trends if in production. Responsible for overseeing the collection of new plant performance data. Assist the Product Development Manager (PDM) in finding and acquiring potential new plant varieties. Represent and promote Spring Meadow and new products in the trade press and at tradeshows and conferences. The ideal candidate will have at least two years of relevant experience in plant development, growing, and/or plant trialing, as well as a 4-6 year degree in Horticulture or a related field.

Duties & Responsibilities 

Manage formal plant evaluations

1. Work with R&D Trial Grower to create and maintain plant evaluation forms specific to each plant species/trials

2. Work with R&D Trial Grower to collect, organize and analyze plant evaluation data from container, garden, and field trials to help identify the best potential introductions

3. Seek out and acquire comparison plants (controls) for trials, competitor’s new introductions

4. Meet weekly with the R&D NewPlant Committee to review trials and to recommend new introductions

Systematically and regularly communicate with external plant breeders

1. Update progress of the plant(s) in trial (2x/yr)

2. Update progress of plants in production(1x/yr)

3. Inform them when a plant is accepted or rejected

4. Maintain up-to-date contact information

5. Manage the completion and collection of Plant Inventors Forms and trialing/licensing agreements

Assist the Product Manager in the global search for breeders and potential new introductions.

1. Research potential new plant breeders and plant breeding programs

2. Visit breeders to evaluate work and to sell Spring Meadow as a partner

3. Collect seed and new and interesting germplasm for the breeding staff

4. Attend plant society meetings (i.e.Holly Society, Lilac Society, etc.) to make connections and collect germplasm

Assist in the documentation of new varieties

1. Collect information for plant database

2. Assist with the collection of plant patent descriptions and photos

Assist with government regulations and the importation of new plants

1. File for and maintain up-to-date import permits

2. Work with NPD/Stock Manager on inspections and clearance

3. Maintain an updated list of plant beans and quarantines

4. Lobby state governments to gain invasive plant ban exemptions for sterile cultivars

In conjunction with sales, provide customer service in plant care solutions

Promote Spring Meadow genetics by writing plant articles for industry trade magazines and making presentations at tradeshows and conferences

Assist sales with customer phonecalls and correspondence; attend tradeshows

Act as a resource to other department managers for problem-solving, internal research projects, and the development of new techniques

Plan / schedule / evaluate /follow-up work progress and prioritize work activities

Responsible for written documentation of all related policies and procedures

Maintain equipment in good working order

Travel Requirement: approx. 40%

Perform special projects as assigned

Assist Product Development Manager as requested

Education and Experience 


4-6 yr. Horticulture or related degree and two to five years of increasing relevant experience in plant development, growing, and/or plant trialing. Must be passionate about ornamental plants. Organizational, interpersonal, and computer skills.

Performance requirements:

Must maintain a level of performance equivalent to company standards, that being a “Meets Expectations” in all areas of your performance evaluations (self and management reviews).

The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this job. They are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties, and skills required of personnel so classified.

Application Instructions 

Please email resume with a cover letter to

Full Name 
Daniela Deppe