Nursery Operations Technician

Oxbow Farm & Conservation Center

Carnation, Washington

Job Type Permanent
Salary Details $16-$17 hr

OXBOW’S MISSION

Our mission is to inspire people to eat healthy, sustainably grown food and to steward our natural resources for future generations.

WHAT WE DO

Oxbow Farm & Conservation Center is located on 230 acres of forest and grassland bordered by Western Washington’s Snoqualmie River. We use this mixed landscape to:

Produce food. We cultivate 12 acres of certified organic mixed vegetable crops, herbs, and flowers using agro-ecological principles and engage in research to inform conservation agriculture practices. We grow food for local grocery stores, restaurants, hunger relief, a CSA program, and an on-site seasonal Farm Stand.

Grow native plants. We operate a native plant nursery that uses sustainable growing methods to produce plants for habitat restoration projects and urban landscapes. We share our knowledge to encourage increased production and use of natives in the Pacific Northwest, and beyond.

Connect children to nature. We offer education programs for children pre-K through high school to build environmental literacy and provide students with opportunities to learn about the links between agriculture, conservation, and the environment.

Restore and sustain habitat. We carry out ecological restoration projects and partner with scientists, regional planners, and other environmental organizations to learn how humans can benefit from the land while protecting biodiversity.

Cultivate community. We offer people of all ages opportunities to put their values into action as we promote climate resilience and encourage healthy food systems. We foster community through volunteer opportunities, Membership, a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program, workshops & tours, and special events.

POSITION OVERVIEW

The Nursery Operations Technician will assist in all aspects of native plant production throughout the year, such as plant propagation, fertilization, irrigation, pest management and order preparation. Oxbow’s ideal candidate will be dedicated to native plants and nursery production. They are a true caretaker, ready for a two-year commitment to our native plants. This person values precise attention to detail and efficiency and have a background and interest in horticulture, and/or nursery science.

JOB RESPONSIBILITIES

Plant Production-

Propagation-

  • Assist with fall and spring sowing
  • Carryout propagation via cuttings and divisions as seasonally appropriate
  • Assist with transplanting schedule for all species
  • Assist with seed collection and cleaning activities

Irrigation and Fertilization-

  • Schedule and perform irrigation and fertilization according to each species’ cultural needs to ensure crop health

Integrated Pest Management-

  • Assist with implementing the IPM program through organic pesticide applications, beneficial insect releases, monitoring, record keeping and sanitation procedures
  • Ensure that correct application and safety procedures are adhered to and that application records are kept up to date

 General Plant Maintenance-

  • Maintain plant quality including pruning, weeding, trimming and thinning
  • Assist with optimizing nursery space to allow for each species-specific needs, i.e. drainage, light requirements, hardening and protection from elements

Equipment and Facilities-

  • Perform timely maintenance, safe use, and inventory tracking of nursery equipment and tools
  • Maintain cleanliness and organization of nursery buildings, growing areas and surrounding grounds
  • Assist with the maintenance and installation of native plantings on the property
  • Assist with inclement weather/flood preparation and clean up

Nursery Sales and Customer Care-

  • Assist with pulling, preparing and organizing plant orders
  • Assist with loading and delivering plant orders

Planning and Nursery Management-

  • Utilize record keeping systems and tools to best track propagation, inventory, IPM, and species cultural information
  • Identify ways to improve and standardize production methods and record keeping practices
  • Serve as lead nursery staff member in the absence of the management team
  • Assist with event preparations

General -

  • Represent Oxbow in a positive, professional manner, engaging with and educating visitors about Oxbow’s mission and programs
  • Perform other duties as needed and assigned by the Native Plant Manager
  • Work cross-functionally with program teams to ensure efficient and effective communication and operations

QUALIFICATIONS

  • At least 1 year of nursery production experience
  • Demonstrated ability to organize and prioritize work so that production schedules are met
  • Creative problem solver with the ability to develop or seek out innovative approaches and ideas
  • Strong record keeping and observation skills as well as competency with Microsoft Office
  • Ability to work with urgency while maintaining consistent attention to detail
  • Ability to take direction, ask for help/clarity when necessary and accept constructive feedback
  • Ability to communicate with customers and the greater Oxbow community in a respectful and professional manner
  • Ability to work: standing, sitting, bending over or kneeling; to lift heavy & awkward objects, up to 50 lbs.; perform physical work such as digging or planting; and in inclement weather
  • Willingness and ability to occasionally work weekends and holidays
  • Comfortable driving a box truck and cargo van
  • Ability to work independently and within a team
  • Flexible, creative, and able to perform well in diverse conditions and under pressure
  • Work cross-functionally with program teams to ensure efficient and effective communication and operations
  • Unless otherwise specified, Oxbow staff are expected to work several weekend days throughout the events season (March-November).
  • Valid driver’s license and a clean driving record
  • Flexible, creative, and able to perform well in diverse conditions and under pressure

Additional desired qualities include: environmentally conscious, detail oriented, self-motivated, energetic, and professional.

The Oxbow Native Plant Nursery  is part of a larger non-profit organization. A commitment to Oxbow’s overall mission and working as part of a team is critical.

EQUAL OPPORTUNITY COMMITMENT

Oxbow is committed to cultivating a culture of diversity and inclusion. We value the individual differences, life experiences, and knowledge that our staff members bring to their work and their communities. Valuing diversity is a significant part of our culture, our values, and the success of Oxbow’s mission.

Oxbow provides equal employment opportunities to all staff members and applicants for employment and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type on the basis of race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local laws.

Oxbow is committed to fostering a racially diverse team. People of color are encouraged to apply.

COMPENSATION

This is a regular, full-time/part-time position, paying $16-$17 per hour with competitive benefits including: 100% employer paid healthcare, annual dental stipend, generous holiday, vacation and sick pay, and access to food from the fields.

REPORTS TO:  Native Plant Nursery Manager

HOW TO APPLY

Please read carefully and email a resume, letter of interest, and 3 references to Tara Baron- Recruitment Specialist at thedirt@oxbow.org 

Please write Nursery Operations Technician in the email subject line and include where you found this position in the message body.

Applications received by Sunday, February 21, 2021 will have first consideration. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis after this date until all positions are filled.

To see this job posting, and our other open jobs, on our website, click here.

When you apply, please indicate that you are responding to the posting on Conservation Job Board.
Category Botany