Job: Gardener & Greenhouse Associate

Department: DPB – Plant Biology

Salary: $15-$18/hour DOE

Location: Stanford, CA

The Carnegie Institution for Science’s Plant Biology and Global Ecology has an immediate opening for a part-time gardener and greenhouse associate. We are located on the Stanford campus.  This position reports to the Greenhouse Manager, is a non-exempt, hourly position and may include weekends and holidays as needed.

JOB SUMMARY:     Gardening 15 hrs/week         Greenhouse 10 hrs/week

The Carnegie Institution grounds contain 2+ acres of gardens, much of which are dedicated to California or Bay Area native species. We are looking to hire a part-time gardener to maintain and develop the grounds, including but not limited to routine weeding and watering. We prefer someone who would like to take on a personal interest in this garden, to care for existing species and develop new areas with limited budget and limited water. It is essential that the candidate have knowledge of California native and drought tolerant species, commonly grown horticultural plants, and noxious weeds, as well as experience pruning and fertilizing shrubs for optimal plant health.

Gardening Duties:

  • Watering, raking, trimming, sweeping and maintaining Carnegie grounds.
  • Use general outdoor gardening tools.
  • Maintains and uses all tools according to Carnegie’s safety policy.
  • Assists with site setup of plant materials.
  • Ensures indigenous plants are maintained and protected.
  • Planning plant removal or replacement within the Carnegie site.
  • Ensures that job site staging area is clean and well organized. Complies with Carnegie’s safety policy at all times.
  • Ecological removal and disposal of debris and fertilization.

General description of seasonal tasks:

  • Summer & early fall: watering (turn on irrigation and hand watering).
  • Late Fall: pruning salvias and other shrubs, fertilizing, watering (if necessary)
  • Winter: sowing seeds in flats and in ground for spring/summer flowers, purchase and transplant new plants
  • Early spring: Purchase and distribute mulch
  • Spring: Hand weeding in garden beds, weed whacking mature weed grasses, thistles, etc.

Greenhouse duties:

  • Greenhouse facility supports both plant biology and global ecology. Help to maintain greenhouses, growth rooms and growth chambers.
  • Responsible for watering all plants in the greenhouses.
  • Checking soil bins and adding soil as needed.
  • Operating the greenhouse autoclave to sterilize plant waste.
  • Dumping soil in the compost area.
  • Wash and stack flats, pots and propagation domes as needed.
  • General housekeeping including sweeping greenhouses and surrounding pavement, bundling stakes, restocking supplies and cleaning communal areas.
  • Dump garbage bins from the greenhouse walkway in the dumpster.
  • Clean greenhouses, growth rooms, and growth chambers.
  • Clean the greenhouse autoclave.
  • Prepare and place pest traps throughout the growth facility.
  • Use of pesticides: Must receive and maintain a QAC (Qualified Applicators Certificate) through CDPR (California Department of Pesticide Regulation) within two months of employment to apply pesticides (expense for certification to be paid by Carnegie).


  • Must be able to read, legibly write, speak and understand English.
  • Evidence of reliable work attendance and attention to detail.
  • Ability to be work cooperatively with co-workers and follow directions.
  • Ability to work autonomously on weekends, holidays, and as needed.
  • Self-starter, time management, and handle feedback.

Work Environment: The duties of this job, the employee is regularly exposed to outdoor weather conditions. The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.

Physical Demands: The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job.

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to have full range of mobility in upper and lower body; be able to reach overhead; be able to work in various positions, including stooping, standing, bending over, sitting, kneeling and squatting for extended periods of time; be able to lift, pull and push materials and equipment to complete assigned job tasks; climb a ladder; and be able to frequently lift 50 pounds of weight throughout the assigned workday.

The Carnegie Institution of Washington is a non-profit organization that conducts basic scientific research. It has a strong institutional commitment to the principle of diversity. In that spirit, we particularly encourage applications from women, members of ethnic minorities, and individuals with disabilities. This position offers competitive salary and benefits in a dynamic, stimulating environment.  To apply, email the following to  Also please log on to  and fill out the voluntary self-identification form.