Employment & Botanical Garden Jobs

Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden is now accepting applications for these botanical garden jobs. Work for one of the Top 10 public gardens in North America. One of the most-visited attractions in the Richmond, Va. area, Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden offers year-round beauty on a historic property with more than 50 acres of spectacular gardens, dining and shopping.

Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

Full Time Openings

Director of Horticulture

Our next Director of Horticulture will be a strong, intuitive leader with a passion for the earth, horticulture, botany, wildlife, plant collections, and evocative garden displays.  She or he will delight in motivating and being part of a successful team that strives to engage our community ever more fully. The successful candidate will be a cheerful and approachable colleague, and a tireless advocate of horticultural employees, adept at assessing and promoting their strengths, and energetic in advancing their professional aspirations.  The Director of Horticulture will continue efforts to make and maintain beautiful and educational gardens while nurturing and expanding our plant collections of focus.

The Director of Horticulture is responsible for managing:
·       Gardens, grounds, conservatory displays, lakes, streams, and all related buildings, infrastructure, hardscape, and equipment at the Garden and Reserve
·       17 Full-time equivalent employees and 6,500+ hours of unpaid support from Garden volunteers
·       Training and development of paid and unpaid staff
·       Outsourced services related to horticulture and garden maintenance and expansion
·       Assigned budget
·       Thorough integration of Horticulture department into mission, goals, and objectives of entire Garden, our local communities, and the broader community of botanical gardens in North America

Leadership and Interpersonal Relations
·       Serves on Garden’s leadership team, participates in long range planning and the design and implementation of programs and projects
·       Determines annual budget needs, authorizes budget expenditures, manages assigned budgets, and provides periodic reports to Comptroller and Executive Director
·       Embraces the Garden’s commitment to excellence in guest services, formal and informal education, willingly and cheerfully integrating work of  horticulture department with the efforts of other departments
·       Works with Board of Directors, board committees and Garden patrons and allies
·       Collaborates with Advancement to support fundraising and stewardship initiatives related to horticultural objectives, and with PR/Marketing to more broadly share the Garden’s accomplishments and aspirations
·       Provides technical advice and horticultural consulting for community engagement and Beautiful RVA projects
·       Pursues leadership opportunities in regional and national horticultural associations (e.g., CVNLA, APGA)

Horticulture, Design, and Display
·       Establishes and implements aesthetic and horticultural standards as well as best practice standards of  garden care and maintenance, with an ever increasing emphasis on resilient and organic practices without compromising garden display
·       Implements elements of the current strategic plan related to horticulture, emphasizing plant collections of focus, collection certification, horticultural display, and garden accessibility for guests of diverse backgrounds
·       Ensures curation of  plant collections at Garden and Reserve
·       Manages horticultural maintenance, construction, installation, and renovation, as well as associated outsourced contractors

Supervision and Training
·       Supervises the installation, maintenance, renovation, and repair of grounds, gardens and conservatory displays
·       With Horticulture Manager, interviews, assesses, screens and hires candidates for positions in horticulture department
·       With Horticulture Manager, trains, supervises, nurtures, encourages, assesses and counsels paid and unpaid horticulture staff
·       Fosters teamwork and mentors staff members by modeling best practices alongside them
·       Empowers staff by granting authority and autonomy whenever possible
·       Designs, implements, and monitors horticulturist and intern training programs
·       Teaches occasional classes as part of the Garden’s education program and provides internal training for Garden staff
·       With supervisor, establishes and implements safety and risk management programs and training
·       Devises and implements proper inventory control measures
·       Establishes and implements preventive maintenance cycles for structures, systems, equipment, and vehicles in department in coordination with Operations Manager and Maintenance Coordinator

Establishes professional and cordial relations with vendors, allied organizations, and individuals in the region and nationally

To apply, please see the full Director of Horticulture job description and submit resume, with cover letter summarizing your aspirations for the horticulture department, to Kristen Brown, Project Coordinator, [email protected].

Membership Coordinator

Job Description:


The Membership Coordinator is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Membership office within the Office of Advancement. The coordinator will be responsible for accurate and timely constituent data entry, memberships and gifts processing in The Raiser’s Edge database received through multiple channels, producing donor receipts and acknowledgements, and providing exemplary customer support in a fast-paced environment.

In addition to customer service and processing responsibilities, the Membership Coordinator will produce regular reports relevant to membership operations and will provide thoughtful, well researched recommendations for improvements to processes, policies, and data management. S/he will support Annual Fund and Stewardship strategies to increase overall memberships, strengthen members’ affiliation with the Garden, and encourage members to engage at higher membership levels.

The Membership Coordinator must have sharp attention to detail, the ability to handle sensitive and confidential information with discretion, possess keen problem-solving skills, and have the demonstrated ability to work efficiently within a team in productive and collaborative ways.

A good sense of humor, as well as interest in furthering his/her knowledge of data systems, IRS rules and regulations, and industry best practices is preferred.

To apply, please see the full Membership Coordinator job description and send a resume and cover letter  to [email protected].

Events Staff Assistant

The Events Staff Assistant reports to the Assistant Facility Events Coordinator and is responsible for supporting rental events including weddings, corporate, nonprofit and private events, as well as GardenFest events, and to ensure a quality experience for the rental client and their guests. This position will work closely with the Facility Events Coordinators, Director of Guest Services, Meriwether Godsey Managers, Operations Team Members, and in cooperation with the Garden’s Security Coordinator to ensure events run smoothly and in accordance with facility rental terms and conditions.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Provide regular on-site event support that enables the department coordinators to focus on handling rental inquiries, setting appointments for tours, generating contracts, maintaining accurate website information, a consistent social media presence and develop new marketing strategies to increase revenue.
  • Creates and posts temporary event signage for facility rental events based on booked events.
  • Inspects event venue to ensure the physical event setup is complete, accurate and ready for guests.
  • Directs vendors to appropriate venue(s) based on vendor information form(s) and in compliance with rental contract terms and conditions.
  • Serves as initial point of contact for rental clients and guests to ensure they find desired destinations (event sites, parking lots and event entrances, etc.) and provide event or basic Garden information as needed.
  • Comfortable meeting with potential rental clients and providing facility tours for drop-ins and appointments for wedding, corporate, non-profit and private events.
  • Knowledgeable about facility rental terms and conditions, especially key terms that may affect multiple events and can site these correctly during tours.
  • Able to quickly understand the Gardens complex logistics for all programming schedules and intuitively trouble shoot or relay concerns to supervisor.
  • Meets with booked rental clients to perform audiovisual tests as needed and required
  • Responds to guest feedback, keeping supervisors informed of desired results, and working towards established goals within budgetary and mission-driven constraints.
  • Serves as lead for part time Facility Event Staff Assistants on weekends and days with multiple events requiring event support.
  • Attend Friday and Saturday wedding rehearsal(s) to review event setup with bridal client and/or wedding coordinator; answer questions and/or coordinate last minute requests.
  • Prepares Facility Rental marketing packages and ensures they are stocked at the Robins Visitors Center admissions desk and Kelly Education Center information kiosk.
  • Creates marketing materials for the department to include promotional booklets/brouchers, video tours of venues and promotional emails.
  • Assist with implementing social media platforms for the department to include researching potential new social media outlets.
  • Updating and monitoring current social media accounts.
  • Maintains and updates recommended vendor lists.
  • Manages and organizes the department’s wedding photo database.
  • Organize and digitalize archived event information for the department to include creating a database for past rental documents.

To apply, please see the full Events Staff Assistant job description and submit your resume, cover letter and application to Donna Dooley, Facility Events Coordinator, [email protected].


Part Time/Seasonal Openings & Internships:

Horticulture Research Intern

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

Research Tasks

  • Work with Manager of Horticulture to develop and execute a summer research project. Research topic will be a fusion of Garden’s needs and student interests.  Examples of past topics have included water quality monitoring, dry shade perennial research, Integrated Pest Management resources and strategies, food crop production, medicinal plants, and compost tea.
  • Prepare and present a summary report of experience, procedures and findings to Garden staff and guests.

Horticulture TasksLaura Schumm, Community Kitchen horticulturist, and Sarah McClanahan, horticulture research intern, paddled out into the middle of Irrigation Lake to conduct water testing and acquire sample. They have to get the water sample from the deepest part of the lake to ensure that the data will be accurate and precise.

  • Assist horticulturists in all areas of the Garden with wide variety of primary garden care tasks, including planting, mulching, grooming, watering, fertilizing, weeding, etc., using best horticulture practices in accordance with established Garden standards.
  • Participate in routine group tasks such as leaf blowing walkways and string trimming weeds.
  • Perform routine maintenance on Garden power tools and equipment, such as filling gas cans, re-stringing trimmers, cleaning and sanitizing tools, and keeping equipment organized and tidy.


  • Knowledge of landscape maintenance practices and hardy plant care appropriate to the region.
  • Ability to operate required tools and equipment.
  • Strong work ethic and capacity for continuous manual labor.
  • Strong verbal communication skills.
  • Working knowledge of computers including Microsoft Office programs.

Physical Demands:

  • Must be able to lift 50 pounds repeatedly.
  • Must be able to work indoors in conservatory conditions and outdoors in all seasonal extremes.
  • Must be able to bend, squat, kneel, stand and walk for extended periods of time.

Note: Duties described above, other duties and physical demands have been identified as essential functions as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act.


  • Student or graduate in horticulture, plant science, or related field is required.
  • Minimum 2.75/4.0 GPA

Application Instructions:

To apply please see the full Horticulture Research Intern job description and send a cover letter, resume, and college transcripts to Horticulture Manager, George Cowart ([email protected]).

Public Relations & Marketing Intern (Social Media)

The PR department strives to build the Lewis Ginter Botanical brand through all communication and concentrates efforts on publicity or “free” exposure for the Garden.  By supporting all areas of the Garden, public relations and marketing works to entice people to visit, and to engage them in a relationship with the Garden.

General job duties of Public Relations Interns:

  • Work with director of public relations and public relations coordinator to help meet needs of reporters and photographers.
  • Help update calendar events on the Garden’s website
  • Post Garden info to websites such as tourism sites and media calendars
  • Research and write basic news releases
  • Take and upload digital photos of the Garden
  • Assist with events as needed
  • Provide general office and project support for the PR & Marketing Dept.
  • Assist in supporting the Garden’s social media efforts as needed, including filming and edit movies.
  • Write blog posts for the Garden’s blog.


  • Strong writing & communication skills
  • Ability to work on computers and use a digital camera
  • Some simple graphic design skills and the ability to use or to learn PhotoShop & WordPress
  • Should be prepared to work in a business environment
  • Ability to work on deadline
  • Should be able to work alone and as part of a team
  • Experience using Flickr, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Tumblr, Instagram, Pinterest, Google+, blogging is desired

Internship training includes:

  • Press release formats and AP style
  • How to write to encourage news coverage and create public interest
  • The opportunity to learn more about social media and using it to connect with the community & to pitch stories

This internship is offered year-round. Hours are flexible, but require 150 hours per semester, 10-15 hours  per week. This is an unpaid internship.

To apply please send the following to Ms. Jonah Holland, PR & Marketing Coordinator at [email protected].

  • Resume
  • 2 writing samples
  • Cover letter detailing your interest in the specific internship and how this experience will help you reach your educational and career goals, and your scheduling availability (start/end dates, day/times available).
  • 2 recommendations (preferably on LinkedIn)

Deadlines for applications (somewhat flexible):

Fall Semester/August 25
Spring Semester/November 30
Summer/March 15