Grounds Supervisor/Horticulturalist

Princeton, NJ
Jul 03, 2017
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

Requisition # 2017-7438
Department Landscape Grounds Shop
Category Grounds and Landscape Services
Date Posted 6 months ago
Full-Time / Part-Time Full-Time
Application Deadline


Princeton University maintains one of the finest and most diverse collections of trees and plants in New Jersey. The Grounds Supervisor/Horticulturalist working with the university grounds management team and with an in-depth knowledge and understanding of a wide range of diverse trees and plants, including specimen materials, cultivation, and preservation of plant material has the primary responsibility for assuring the well-being of the campus landscape and gardens. The candidate must be up to date and knowledgeable in sustainable practices and environmental challenges in the field.


Technical Resource
  • Establish and maintain high horticultural standards and practices; provide direction, training and motivation for all staff. Knowledge of Federal, State, and local laws, and standards governing area of responsibility. Investigates prospective problems with insects, diseases or other maladies that affect plants, grass, trees and shrubs. Takes action or recommends a course of action to correct problem. Knowledge of theories, practices, and principles of Botany, Ornamental Horticulture, and/or Entomology. Oversees field compliance with safety standards and practices. Ascertains safety practices and or equipment required to perform each job and oversees their use. Makes sure all training, that is required has been completed before operation of this equipment.

Work Management
  • Performs a wide range of landscape/maintenance tasks important to the cultivation, preservation, protection and transplanting of existing plants; including but not limited to soil preparation, planting, mulching, weeding, watering, fertilization, irrigation, IPM and pesticide application as needed. Strong knowledge in trimming, pruning and grooming of all types of plant material, many different styles and techniques required on campus. Ensures that assigned crew abides by professional standards for quality, productivity and follows the department's customer service standards. Interpret soil analysis; develops amendment strategies; modifies organic landscape maintenance programs to achieve desired results. Skill in troubleshooting and assessing problems and determining most effective corrective action. Assists in the selection and purchasing of materials, tools and equipment that best meet department needs.

Staff development and training
  • Collaborates with management team in developing schedules and assignments, ensuring the highest level of excellence in landscape maintenance and plant care. Provides training to various supervisors and crew members in both classroom and field setting to constantly improve department. Prepares product specifications and requisitions for pesticides, chemicals, plant materials, fertilizers and other supplies required to accomplish objective. Provide direction to ensure a safe work environment for personnel, enforces safe work rules and practices. Provides first level of oversight for safety compliance. Reviews crewmembers work performance with the area supervisor. Advises the area supervisor of any performance difficulties, problems with equipment etc.


The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required.
  • To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty to the highest level.
  • A degree in Horticulture, Botany, Natural Sciences or an equivalent amount of in the field training of all essential duties listed above.
  • A minimum of 10 years of experience as a professional Horticulturist, or related field in a similar work environment. An equivalent combination of skills, education and experience may be considered.
  • Strong knowledge of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) disease and insect control.
  • 3A & 3B Pesticide License, if current license is out of the state of New Jersey or license has expired the ability to get one within 6 months after hire date.
  • Possess significant knowledge and work experience in a Grounds and Landscape operation.
  • Possess strong knowledge of safe work practices and procedures.
  • Must possess excellent interpersonal and customer service skills.
  • Must be able to effectively communicate, both verbally and in writing.
  • Have the ability to motivate and coordinate staff and provide material planning for maximum workflow effectiveness.
  • Must possess broad-based experience with all types of equipment used in grounds maintenance operations, including knowledge of proper operating techniques as well as operator maintenance requirements.
  • Demonstrated ability to provide supervisory assistance to the Shop Supervisor and assume interim responsibilities in their absence.
  • As an essential employee, must be available to work overtime involving both early as well as late hours and weekends. Must be able to respond promptly to emergency call-ins during inclement weather including snow and ice conditions.
  • Must possess a valid driver's license.


Bachelor's degree in Horticulture, Botany, Natural Sciences or an equivalent. Special consideration will be given to applicants with extensive grounds maintenance background, horticultural experience and pesticide knowledge in a campus or public garden setting. Past experience working in a greenhouse environment or knowledge in propagation of annuals & perennials as well as rooting hardwood cuttings a plus.


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. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • stand or walk 2 - 4 hours at one time, up to 8 hours per day;
  • sit for less than 2 hours during an 8 hour day, except while operating mowers or trimming operations, or during snow removal operations;
  • during grass mowing or trimming operation or snow removal operations, sits for 2-4 hours at one time, up to 8 hours per day;
  • during grass mowing or trimming operations or snow removal operations, operates motor vehicles (including mowers) or heavy equipment (e.g., forklift, high reach, cherry picker) constantly (over 67% of the workday);
  • lift or carry up to 50 pounds frequently (34 - 66% of the workday) and 75 pounds occasionally (less than 33% of the workday);
  • lift up to 75 pounds to waist height and up to 50 pounds in a range of motions from floor to overhead:
  • frequently use hands for simple grasping, fine manipulation, pushing or pulling (34 - 66% of the workday);
  • occasionally push or pull with forces up to 75 pounds, climb stairs or ladders, dig or pick, use jack hammer or air spade, crawl, lift overhead, lie down, or knee stand (less than 33% of the work day);
  • frequently push or pull with forces up to 50 pounds, bend, squat, kneel, or reach overhead (34 - 66% of the work day);
  • work outdoors in a variety of temperatures and environmental conditions;
  • Possess ability to work at heights, full range of body motions and physical agility, and ability to maintain balance.

Princeton University is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law. EEO IS THE LAW

Salary Grade

MMX, 130

Standard Weekly Hours


Eligible for Overtime


Benefits Eligible


Essential Services Personnel (see policy for detail)


Physical Capacity Exam Required


Valid Driver's License Required


Connect With Us! Join our Talent Network to receive updates about working at Princeton.

Princeton University requires all candidates to complete a background check successfully prior to the start of employment. The type and extent of background checks may vary depending on job requirements and/or functions.

Princeton University requires some candidates to complete a physical capacity exam successfully prior to the start of employment. The type and extent of physical capacity exam may vary depending on job requirements and/or functions.

Princeton University is a residential community and an employer that operates continuously 24 hours a day. Essential services employees perform jobs that are necessary and required to maintain basic University operations during scheduled closures or unscheduled suspension of normal operations due to emergencies, events, or other situations. Essential services employees may be asked and/or required to perform jobs or duties that fall outside of their normal job classification during an emergency event. Learn more about our Essential Services policy.

If you have questions or comments regarding the iCIMS Privacy Policy or iCIMS FAQs, please contact

Go to our careers site.


Similar jobs

Similar jobs