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Rose Horticulturalist: Job Duties and Requirements

Sep 20, 2019

Learn about the education and preparation needed to become a rose horticulturalist. Get a quick view of the requirements as well as details about the training, job duties and required skills to find out if this is the career for you.

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A rose horticulturalist specializes in the cultivation, care, and harvesting of roses. They need to understand how seasons, soils and fertilizers can influence the growth and appearance of the plant. On-the-job training and an interest in gardening is often enough preparation for this career.

Essential Information

Rose horticulturalists are responsible for planting and caring for roses, as well as displaying them for maximum aesthetic effect. They must have knowledge of the seasonal effects, soil types, fertilizers, watering, and harvesting. People in this career field typically find employment working in greenhouses, nurseries, or for landscaping firms. In addition, they may teach classes and conduct research at colleges and universities. Although entry-level work in this field may be obtained with on-the-job training, advancement may require a degree in horticulture, botany, or a related field. Someone who enjoys gardening, working with their hands, and floral design may find this to be an enjoyable line of work.

Required Education Some postsecondary work in botany or horticulture may help in finding employment
Other Requirements On-the-job training
Projected Job Growth (2018-2028)* 1% (for all agricultural workers)
Median Salary (2019)** $40,752 (for all horticulturalists)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **Payscale.com

Job Duties for Rose Horticulturalists

Rose horticulturalists, who are proficient in a specialty of ornamental horticulture, are expert in all aspects of cultivating roses, including the appropriate seasons to plant roses, the types of soil useful for growing them and the proper methods of watering, fertilizing and harvesting. Rose horticulturists can work in a variety of settings, including greenhouses, nurseries or landscape design firms. They can also teach horticultural classes or conduct research at colleges and universities.

Landscape Design and Greenhouse Jobs

Rose horticulturists who work at greenhouses and nurseries oversee the production of roses that are sold for replanting in private, public and corporate gardens. They may also be contracted to directly supervise planting.

Rose horticulturalist who work with landscape architects and contractors manage the planting and cultivation of roses. Their duties include tilling the soil, selecting specific varieties of roses and controlling pests. The services of these rose horticulturalists are put to use in such diverse settings as nature conservancy sites, golf courses and botanical gardens.

August 2019 data from PayScale.com reported that salary for horticulturists ranged from $29,000 to $65,000 per year. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) doesn't have a specific employment category for rose horticulturists, but the job duties of both nursery and greenhouse workers and horticultural specialty farmers and managers included related tasks.

The BLS' job outlook for 2018-2028 found that agricultural workers were expected to see minimal or no change in opportunities, while farmers, ranchers and other nursery-related occupations were to see a 2% minimal increase in employment over the decade.

Teaching and Research Jobs

Rose horticulturalists teach in colleges or universities that offer degree programs in ornamental horticulture. They conduct extensive research into rose propagation and breeding and may be responsible for improving individual rose species and creating new hybrids. They manage the operation of large on-campus greenhouses that are used for course work and research by students and faculty.

Requirements for Rose Horticulturalists

It's possible to learn about growing roses through on-the-job training. However, career advancement and employment in positions of greater responsibility as a horticultural technician may require completion of a certificate or degree program in ornamental horticulture or a related field such as biology or botany.

In addition to being an expert on the care of cultivation of roses, knowledge of landscape practices is essential. Because of the high visibility of the work, rose horticulturalists in landscape settings should possess strong communications and public relations skills.

To teach and conduct research in rose horticulture at the college level, a minimum of a master's degree is required, with evidence that the horticulturalist is making progress toward a doctorate. College faculty members must be expert in the scientific specialty of studying roses.

As proof of their career commitment, technicians can earn professional certification through the American Society for Horticultural Sciences.

Rose horticulturalists often work with on-the-job training, however a degree can assist in career advancement, and certification is available. They work in landscape design, greenhouses jobs, or rose horticulture teaching positions. In general, horticulturalists earned a median salary of around $41,000 in 2019.

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