Create beautiful outdoor spaces for people to enjoy
What do Gardeners do?
Gardeners create and maintain a wide variety of natural spaces, including parks, yards, and landscapes, and can spot and treat diseases and problems in plants. They plant and cultivate all kinds of plants, from flowers to massive trees and everything in between.
If you have a passion for plants, want a job that will get you out in nature, are physically fit, and are willing to get your hands dirty, gardening could be the perfect career for you.
- Love nature and the outdoors
- Resilient and physically fit
- Doesn’t mind getting hands dirty
- Good communication skills
- Enjoys outdoor work
- Hard working and capable
- Safety conscious
- Adaptable and flexible
- Growing and raising seeds and seedlings
- Preparing and maintaining garden beds and growing sites
- Maintaining gardens through mowing, weeding and trimming
- Watering, fertilising and maintaining the health of soil and plants
- Selecting plants and other landscaping features for clients
- Building paths, paved areas, fences, water features, and other garden features
- Identifying and controlling diseases and pest problems
Lifestyle Impact: Medium
- Part Time opportunities: Moderate – around 37% of Gardeners work part-time (source: joboutlook.gov.au).
- Average hours for full-time workers: 43 hours a week, which is average (source: joboutlook.gov.au).
- Gardeners’ salary (average) $55,000* per year (source: seek.com.au). *Salaries vary depending on your skills and experience.
- Future career growth: Moderate (source: joboutlook.gov.au).
- You’ll be working outdoors most of the time and will need to be reasonably physically fit. You might also have to work in a variety of weather conditions, rain, hail or shine.
Gardeners are most in demand in these locations:
Gardening is a very large occupation that employed around 67,600 people in 2019 (source: joboutlook.gov.au). Demand is spread across Australia, with slightly higher than average demand in South and Western Australia. Most work construction, administrative and support services, and agriculture, forestry and fishing industries.
There are jobs available around Australia and globally. You’ll need to be on site, so other than choosing plants and materials, it’s unlikely that you will be able to work remotely.
How to become a Gardener in Australia
Although you don’t need to complete formal training to become a Gardener, having a relevant VET qualification can be a great way to build your knowledge and make you more desirable to employers.
Step 1 – Completing Year 10 is usually a requirement. Completing Year 12 could provide you with more opportunities and make you a more competitive job applicant.
Step 2 – Complete a VET qualification in a relevant field such as:
- Certificate III in Horticulture
- Certificate III in Landscape Construction
- Certificate III in Parks and Gardens
- Certificate IV in Permaculture
Most of these courses can also be undertaken through an apprenticeship, meaning you can have the opportunity to earn while you learn and gain valuable on-the-job experience.
Step 3 – Get lots of experience working as a gardener, working with all kinds of plants and building on your skills and knowledge.
Step 4 – Make sure you have any necessary licensing or other requirements covered, such as a White Card if you want to work in construction sites.
Step 5 – Consider upskilling with a Bachelor’s degree to widen your prospects and open up new career paths in management and leadership roles.
Find out more here –
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What do Gardeners do?
Gardeners raise and maintain a wide variety of plants, from established gardens to pristine lawns and striking flower displays. They may also advise on and build other non-organic garden features, such as paths, pergolas, and fences.
Which industries employ Gardeners?
Most Gardeners work in the construction and environmental industries.
What options are there for career progression?
You could start up your own gardening business and employ others, or start a nursery to sell plants to the public and other businesses. Further experience and qualifications could even see you working in land management and advisory roles.
Do I need to go to university to become a Gardener?
No, formal qualifications aren’t always necessary, but having the relevant skills and dedication can go a long way.
Where do Gardeners work?
Gardeners are employed all across Australia and the world. You’ll mostly be working outdoors and need to be prepared to get dirty, but you can also work in greenhouses, indoor gardens and nurseries as well.
What are 3 things I can do right now to help me become a Gardener?
If you’re in high school and you’d like to find out if a career as a Gardener is right for you, here’s a few things you could do right now:
- Start developing your green thumb by building a veggie patch, starting a herb garden, or raising a bed of flowers at home.
- Volunteer within the community at places such as community gardens and botanical gardens to immerse yourself within the natural world and build on your knowledge of plants.
- Take short courses that will build on your skills and look great on your resume.