Horticultural Technician

Keep plants health and happy by watering and fertilizing them in a nursery.
picture of Horticultural Technician

Quick Stats

Salary Range
$17,000 – $26,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Horticultural Technicians do?

Plants, like people, need air, food and water. Because they lack opposable thumbs, however — and, for that matter, central nervous systems — they also need a Caretaker to plant, nurture and maintain them.

If you’re a Horticultural Technician, you’re that Caretaker. An expert on all things botanical, your job as a Horticultural Technician is growing and sustaining plants so they can be used for food, medicine, education or decoration. Typically employed by nurseries and botanical gardens, Horticultural Technicians “parent” plants from seeds to seedlings to adulthood. Your main duties therefore include planting, watering, fertilizing, pruning and transplanting plants — everything from ferns and flowers to trees and shrubs — as well as diagnosing and treating plant diseases.

When you’re not feeding or trimming plants, you’re consulting on how to use them. You might work in a research lab, for instance, assisting and advising Botanists, or at a farm, advising the Farmers who plant and harvest food. Just as likely, you might work at a golf course, or for a Landscape Architect, using your knowledge of flora to create landscape plans and designs.

Wherever you work, the plants in your care ultimately will be used in landscaping, sold at garden centers, planted in parks, studied at universities or processed in labs, where they might be used as ingredients in thing like drugs, beauty creams and perfumes. Because your plants eventually become products — to eat, watch, wear, study and grow — you use your botanical knowledge to make them as healthy and hearty as possible. You’re not just a Gardener, therefore. You’re more like a Supergardener.

Should I be a Horticultural Technician?

You should have a certificate degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Levelheaded: You hold your emotions in check, even in tough situations.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.

  • How to become a Horticultural Technician

    Horticultural Technicians often have a Certificate or higher. Chart?chd=s:9faaak&chl=no+college+%2880%25%29|certificate+%287%25%29||||doctorate+%2813%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,80,80
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