Horticulture Manager

Posted on 07/22/2019

Horticulture Manager
Philbrook Museum of Art – Application Deadline: Open until filled

Set within a twenty-five acre site three miles from downtown Tulsa, Philbrook's main campus is a unique combination of historic house, modern museum complex, and beautifully gardened property. In 2013, the Museum expanded with the opening of Philbrook Downtown - a 30,000 sq. ft. satellite facility located in the heart of Tulsa's vibrant Brady Arts District.

Distinguished by nationally recognized collections, facilities, and gardens, it is the premier cultural institution in the city of Tulsa and a statewide leader in the cultural life of Oklahoma.

Position Overview
Philbrook Museum of Art is seeking a full-time Horticulture Manager. The Horticulture Manager is responsible for the oversight, direction, and administration of the museum’s 25 acre landscaping functions including daily operations and oversight of seasonal displays and specific garden sections.  Works collaboratively with the Horticulture Manager and reports to the Director of Horticulture. This position is expected to work 35 hours per week Monday – Friday, and a comprehensive benefits package is offered including medical, dental, vision, life, 403b, PTO, and more.

Staff Management

  • Direct staff and volunteers to assure quality, consistency, productivity, efficiency, and continuous improvement in all aspects of the daily horticultural operations. 
  • Provide and/or coordinate staff training in horticultural operations. 
  • Monitor and evaluate performance and provide coaching, training, and problem solving support. 
  • Prioritize the safety program and ensure the Horticulture staff operates within regulatory guidelines. Support a safe and secure environment by upholding garden safety policies and procedures and collaborating with Philbrook Security as needed.
  • Plan group projects.

Horticulture Operations

  • Develop, coordinate, monitor, and report on horticultural operations.  Notify Director of Horticulture of concerns, changes, & progress. Make recommendations & implement solutions to related problems.
  • Oversee design, planning, planting, and maintenance of seasonal displays, perennials, and containers; pruning, fertilizing, disease and pest control, and greenhouse production duties are performed properly and according to work schedules and unique requirements throughout the gardens.
  • Plan and schedule maintenance and repair of tools, equipment, water systems, and garden furniture and fixtures, as needed and in a safe manner.  Report issues to the Director of Horticulture. 
  • Assure that paved areas (parking lots, drives, stairs, walkways) in relevant sections remain clean and free of debris (to include snow and ice) to retain visual appeal and a safe environment for staff and guests. 
  • Assure garden restrooms in relevant sections are maintained on a daily basis.


  • Under leadership of the Director of Horticulture, develop short- and long-term plans consistent with Philbrook’s mission, vision, & strategic plan. 
  • Represent the Horticulture Department in various meetings and committees with both internal and external stakeholders, including Board, donors, and community members.
  • Procure needed materials for horticulture operations and submit expenses to Accounting according to protocol.
  • Manage contractors, to include obtaining estimates, ensuring file on insurance & liability is up-to-date, scheduling, supervising their work while on property, and submitting invoices to Accounting according to protocol.
  • Assist the Director of Horticulture as required.


  • Assist with management of Horticulture Programming.
  • Propose, develop, and lead programs in accordance with Philbrook’s mission, strategic plan, and goals.
  • Maintain prompt and reliable attendance in order to successfully perform the duties of the job.

Required Qualifications:

  • Technical knowledge and proven skill in a range of horticulture disciplines and techniques including ornamental plant maintenance, plant propagation, herb and vegetable gardens, disease and pest management, and basic small engine operation. 
  • Ability to work with and provide basic maintenance service to typical landscape maintenance equipment (small tractor, mowers, tillers, string-trimmers, pruning/cutting equipment, hand tools, etc.) is preferred. 
  • Proven ability to lead by example and manage an assigned garden area.
  • Embraces a collaborative approach to projects. A precise and clear communicator with strong interpersonal skills and open-minded outlook.
  • Efficiently operate Microsoft Office products.
  • Must be able to meet physical demands and working conditions.

Equivalent Education/Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree in horticulture or related field preferred; an equivalent combination of education, training and experience will be considered.
  • Minimum of six years’ experience in a range of horticulture disciplines.
  • Minimum of three years’ experience in a supervisory role.
  • Possess or obtain an ODA Pesticide Applicator’s License in addition to ability to recognize pests & diseases of ornamental plants & turf
  • Valid driver’s license required.

Physical Demands: Work is very strenuous with the requirement for standing and/or walking (60% or more of the workday) and routine lifting, carrying and pushing up to 50 lbs.  A major amount of the work assignments require the employee to be capable of kneeling, crouching, turning/twisting and bending; handling, fingering, feeling, and good eye-hand/foot-hand-eye coordination is required for most assignments. The ability to reach above the shoulder and head level is involved (in 20%-60% of the job duties).  Ordinary hearing, vision including color, depth perception and field of vision is required.  Ability to operate a computer is required for recordkeeping activities but represents very little time on a daily basis.  Ability to drive various vehicles for use in gardens and for local travel is required.

Working Conditions: Position requires employee to work outside (approximately 75% of the time) in both clement and inclement (hot, cold and wet) weather conditions; due to nature of work assignments, employee may be routinely subject to unavoidable potential hazards related to mechanical tools, moving objects and noise, as well as occasional exposure to electrical, burn, heights, and cramped quarter; the duties of the job will place the employee in situations (20%-60+% of the time) which involve exposure to atmospheric conditions such as dirt, fumes, dusts, odors, oil/grease, gases, chemicals, pesticides, etc. common to gardening, landscaping and lawn care.

Mental and Emotional: In this position the employee must be able to work both under direct supervision and with minimal supervision as well as work effectively both alone and as part of a team, the work requires the employee to be able to work on several tasks at the same time and to execute their duties effectively under the pressure of deadlines (20%-60% of the time).  The ability to demonstrate a positive customer service orientation and discretion when dealing with the public is required.

Garden Information
The Philbrook gardens were designed in 1926 by Hare and Hare, a landscape architecture firm from Kansas City, Missouri, and were completed in 1927. The formal gardens are largely styled after Italian gardens, known for their visual focal points. In keeping with custom of the Renaissance villa the most geometrical designs are closest to the house. The formal patterns relax as the gardens move into the distance. A series of water elements define the gardens, signaling the transition from formal to informal spaces. The grounds consist of 23 acres housing five major gardens, three smaller gardens, four historical structures, and an urban forest numbering over 1,000 trees. The Secret Garden is maintained to provide fresh herbs and vegetables to our Italian restaurant, La Villa.

Interested candidates should send a cover letter and resume via e-mail to [email protected].