Olbrich Botanical Gardens


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Horticulture Intern

Job Title

Horticulture Intern

Job Qualifications

Interns work directly with the horticulture staff in the outdoor gardens and nursery to gain valuable practical work experience in botanical garden maintenance. Individuals will learn all aspects of environmentally responsible horticulture through sustainable gardening practices during the course of the gardening season and will be immersed in innovative and artistic garden designs and seasonal displays. The interns work in all of the outdoor display gardens including the Event, Gravel, Herb, Meadow, Perennial, Rain, Rock, Shade, Sunken, Thai, Tower and Woodland Gardens. Individuals work extensively with annual bed and container plantings, tropicals, aquatics, perennials, and woody plantings. Interns will also have an opportunity to work on annual displays with the horticulture staff on State Street, Madison’s downtown restaurant and shopping district.

Two paid all-day field trips to other innovative gardens and horticultural enterprises are included. Interns will experience Olbrich’s gardening guests during peak visitation times, by working approximately one weekend per month and one of the three summer holidays. Interns will have the opportunity to hone their managerial skills by working with and occasionally supervising garden volunteers.

Education and Experience

Essential Functions:
• Good knowledge of horticulture based on college or technical college course work.

• 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 horticulture staff and volunteers.

• Ability to be tactful and courteous with garden visitors.

• Ability to perform manual and semi-skilled tasks for extended periods of time.

• Ability to multi-task and complete repetitive tasks in a quality manner.

• Ability to work under adverse weather conditions, including rainy, sunny, hot and humid conditions.

• Ability to safely use hand tools and small powered equipment typically used in routine garden maintenance, such as pruners, shovels, tillers, edgers and mowers.

• Ability to safely operate a golf-style utility cart.

• Ability to work with and around plant protectants, including chemical and biological control agents.

• Ability to lift and carry up to 50 pounds, work on the ground, climb and work off a 6’ ladder and bend and stand for up to 8 hours per day.

• Ability to maintain adequate attendance and work weekend and holiday hours as required.

An Inclusive Garden and Workplace

Olbrich Botanical Gardens aspires to be a destination where all visitors, volunteers and staff are valued and feel they belong. With conscious intent and continuous learning, Olbrich Botanical Gardens’ staff, volunteers and board will address barriers to inclusion through education, operational changes and partnerships with the community.

Position Application

Application Instructions: Submit resume, application and questionnaire which can be found at

Contact: Samara Eisner, Horticulturist and Horticulture Intern Coordinator or Jeff Epping, Director of Horticulture