Horticulture deals with everything to do with plants, from growth and production to research and marketing. Horticulturalists are also concerned with the health of plants and soil, and plant preservation as a whole. Careers and jobs for horticulture graduates encompass a variety of different fields because the industry itself is so large. According to a study by Oxford Economics, landscaping and ornamental horticulture alone contributed £24.2 billion to the UK’s GDP in 2017. When it comes to jobs in horticulture, you’re spoilt for choice – check out some of the career paths you can take in this article.
Plant pathologists (https://www.agrirs.co.uk/blog/2021/05/careers-in-plant-pathology) work on plant diseases - identifying them, treating them, and coming up with new types of plants that are resistant to them. A large part of this job is sample collection, which is used in conjunction with lab experiments to further understand diseases that attack and damage plants. This can be through running tests on diseased plants or growing plants and injecting them with pathogens to record the results.
Those in landscape horticulture can pursue careers in design, construction, maintenance, and more. It can include creating art through horticulture by creating a beautiful scenery.
Landscape designers use plants and hardscapes to create gardens. Not only do they have to know about the different plants needed to achieve specific looks, but they also need to know about soil science and plant health to ensure that the plants will fare well in the conditions present. Landscape designers may work for the government (local authorities) or private clients.
Horticulturists can work in landscape maintenance by caring for landscapes that are already established. This includes everything from weed control, moving, pruning, and fertilizing the relevant area in order to maintain the area and keep it at a good standard.
Research and Academia
In addition to pursuing research in plant pathology, research careers in horticulture also include developing new technology and food crops. Other topics include reducing the environmental impact of agriculture and solutions to environmental challenges such as soil degradation. More technical research may also include designing greenhouses, or technology to aid plant growth or handle and store plants.
Academia is also a career option in horticulture, with teachers and lecturers being needed at all levels, including universities and trade schools. Other teaching opportunities can include programs hosted by public gardens or teaching at private institutes.
Floriculture is a huge part of horticulture and deals with the production of flowers. Careers in floriculture include growing, consulting within private firms, overlooking production, and even management opportunities. Those who work in floriculture can also pursue careers as greenhouse growers, where they use their expertise in plant propagation, pest management, harvesting, and plant nutrition to produce and harvest floriculture crops.
One of the most significant ways to contribute to society is through olericulture, where those with horticulture degrees can assist food crop production and health. Not only does this ensure food safety but it can also lead to opportunities in management and marketing.
One of the most common careers in horticulture, ornamental horticulture deals with the decorative and ornamental elements of plants and flowers. This field itself has many sub-specialities including design and consultation. Those in design can with work different floral arrangements, corsages, event florals, wedding florals, and more. Consultation can include advising others on ornamental horticulture, maintenance of flower beds, plant care, etc. Common workplaces include landscaping companies, florists and nurseries.
Horticultural consultants offer their services to both, government organisations and private businesses. This can be advice on everything including grass selection, maintenance, design, different plant types or crop choice, fertilizer use, soil composition and usage, and even golf course design and maintenance. This job involves working closely with others in the field, including farmers, landscapers and production companies.
Business and Marketing
A number of horticultural graduates go into management or start their own businesses. These can include orchards, fruit and vegetable farms, flower and plant shops, greenhouses, landscaping businesses, nurseries, and more.
Marketing opportunities are available in wholesale and retail sale of flowers, seeds, fruits and vegetables, and plants. In addition to being buyers or distributors for other companies or government agencies, individuals can also work as freelancers or consultants.
Those in pest management work to keep plants healthy by combatting pest infestation via natural, chemical or biological means. These individuals can work with private organisations and research institutions to innovate and come up with new solutions, can work with the government and farms in an advisory capacity, or can work closely with agricultural suppliers and regulatory agencies in order to monitor pest control and plant health.
If you love plants, being a plant care worker may be the perfect job for you. Plant care workers use their extensive knowledge of horticulture to care for plants and ensure that they’re healthy. In addition to protecting the plants in your care against diseases, this job may also include growing and propagating plants.
Inspection and Regulation
Both governments and private agencies will hire horticulture specialists to work as inspectors and maintain food safety. This involves inspecting fruits and vegetables to ensure freshness and quality standards. You can also contribute to improving current processes and policies.
Pursuing Careers in Horticulture
If you’re looking for horticultural jobs, there’s no better place to get started than with Agricultural Recruitment Specialists. We pride ourselves on helping you find your dream job and advancing your career goals. You can search for jobs here, upload your CV here, or simply contact us here. Because we also recruit for clients globally, we can help you get the perfect job in the UK, Europe, or Worldwide. Call us on 0044 1905 345 155 and we’ll get started!