How To Become A Professional Gardener
If you like gardening, then there is a chance for you to make a career out of it. Professional gardeners do landscaping jobs in the commercial and residential sectors. You can also see them working in botanical gardens, garden centers, landscaping firms, parks, private residences, real estate, and private businesses with clients that are looking for gardeners. If you already have the knack for gardening, then you must know that you are responsible for every type of plants that you have in your garden. This is also true in professional gardening. You should know how to take care for perennials, annuals, shrubs and trees. If you want to make a career in this field, then you should also know that you will be required to work under the elements at all times. Safety precautions should also be put in place so gardening mishaps can be avoided.
What Is Required
The minimum requirement to become a professional gardener is a high school diploma. However, to really become qualified, you are encouraged to take further studies and obtain an associate degree, a certificate, or a bachelor’s degree in horticulture, landscaping, or other related fields in gardening. Experience in gardening is also preferred, but not really required. It might be a good idea that you acquire a pesticide applicator’s license because, in some instances, this is required. If you really want to be successful in this field, it is a requirement that you practice critical thinking, you are self-motivated, and you have good communication skills. You should also be healthy and fit to do physically strenuous tasks in gardening. Furthermore, you should also have a good bank of knowledge when it comes to landscaping, plant identification, weed control, plant care, irrigation, and tools used gardening. If you have all these qualities, then you have the chance of earning at least $25,000 annually.
The Steps You Need To Take
- Consider further education. A degree in landscaping and horticulture will be very helpful in paving your way to success in the gardening field. Studying these programs will help give you an insight on the foundations of gardening, both scientific and methodological foundations. There are a lot of schools that offer both programs. It is just a matter of finding the right one for you.
- Obtain certifications and a Master Gardener status. Different gardening certifications can be obtained by attending classes and certifications offered by local gardening organizations, state universities, and botanical gardens. You can also obtain a Master Gardener status through state universities and extension offices. On the other hand, you may be required to complete several hours of community service before you can achieve the master status.
- You have to gain experience. One way to gain experience in this field is by working with a professional gardener. This should also be backed up with volunteer work around the community. If you are able to work with a professional gardener, you are also exposing yourself to the clientele. Volunteer work will also help you gain experience and exposure.
- Aim for more. If you are able to find a job in a company, then you have the opportunity to climb up the corporate ladder. Taking the next step will always be up to you. But, if you want to further your career and earn more, then you should aim for that coveted spot and become a manager in the company. With this title behind your name, you can then open your own landscaping company or provide consultation services.