Seasonal Gardener Temporary (Up to 6 months)

The City of Guelph is a vibrant community with over 120,000 people located in the heart of Southern Ontario, just one hours driving distance from Toronto.  Set in a picturesque natural setting, Guelph is known for its rich architectural heritage, growing economy and excellent quality of life – all good reasons to consider a career in this beautiful city.

Job summary

Applications are being accepted for the position of Seasonal Gardener within the Parks Department.  Reporting to the Program Manager, Forestry and Sustainable Landscape, the successful candidate will perform duties related, but not limited to maintaining gardens and green spaces, promoting natural biodiversity, and creating a sustainable urban landscape. This includes planting programs, invasive species management, supporting natural areas stewardship and community led gardens, efforts to reduce human wildlife conflict, and related services within the City’s parks. Guided by the goals and objectives of the City of Guelph Strategic Plan and committed to the Corporate Values of integrity, service, inclusion, wellness and learning, the candidate will aid in the achievement of the Community Vision – an inclusive, connected, prosperous city where we look after each other and our environment.


  • Perform horticultural duties, including but not limited to designing, planting, watering, maintaining and record keeping for annual, perennial and shrub and tree beds to current industry standards, to enhance the sustainable urban landscape of the City of Guelph.
  • Support ecologically functional areas using native plant species, ecological principles, and restoration techniques including invasive species management.
  • Support plant propagation using techniques including seeding, cuttings, splitting and plug production for annuals, perennials, tropical and native plant production.
  • Maintain turf in selected locations.
  • Plan and prepare plantings for seasonal displays of tulips, annuals, perennials, natives, and chrysanthemums in beds, planters and hanging baskets across the city.
  • Prepare various growing media prior to transplanting; gather, clean and store stock plants.
  • Assist with greenhouse management by monitoring and determining the correct temperature, humidity, ventilation control; and, pathological control of significant pests, using an Integrated Pest Management approach, inside and outside.
  • Work with or support community members to maintain gardens or landscape features.
  • Demonstrate a sound understanding of, and utilize all job related tools and equipment including, but not limited to, line trimmers, rototillers, brush chippers, backpack sprayers, chainsaws, chippers, agricultural tractors, loader, chain saws, rotary mowers, post pounders, leaf blowers, sod cutters, EC/pH meters, and small tools in a safe and efficient manner.
  • Carry out all necessary maintenance and adjustments while keeping the equipment in a safe, clean and tidy condition, and perform daily circle checks and report defects and, if necessary, undertake small repairs in a prescribed manner.
  • Lead work and provide guidance to seasonal staff or volunteers, including the safe and efficient use, care and maintenance of tools and equipment, and horticultural practices.
  • Comply with requirements of the Occupational Health & Safety Act, The Highway Traffic Act, Pesticide Act, all Federal, Provincial and City regulations, policies and procedures.
  • Remove and/or flag obstacles hazardous to employees or the public or that interfere with the safe operation of vehicles or equipment, and duly note and report such conditions to a Lead hand or Supervisor.
  • Immediately report vandalism, mechanical difficulties and damage.
  • Assist with winter maintenance (snow clearing) program.
  • Support team goals including wildlife management
  • Perform other related duties as assigned.                          


  • Experience related to the duties listed above, normally acquired through the completion of a Grade 12 diploma plus 2 year post-secondary certificate or diploma in Horticulture, Landscape Architecture, Greenhouse Management, Ecosystem Restoration or closely related field of study and 1 – 2 years of relevant gardening experience in a municipal or commercial environment. Candidates with equivalent combination of education and experience may be considered.
  • Must possess a current Landscape, Forestry, or Greenhouse class applicators license from the Ministry of the Environment.
  • Must possess a Class G licence with a good driving record. Successful candidates will be required to provide a current driver’s abstract prior to their start date to confirm their license is held in good standing and that it has not been suspended or revoked under the Highway Traffic Act (HTA) or Criminal Code of Canada in the last 5 years. The City of Guelph will take into consideration the number of demerit points and/or nature of the infractions to determine if it meets our requirements.
  • Demonstrated experience, knowledge and understanding of garden design, plants, soils, tools, equipment operation and procedures relevant to greenhouse growing and horticultural activities.
  • Must possess a Structural Class licence for the greenhouse or be able to obtain within 6 months of date of hire.
  • Thorough knowledge in currently accepted industry practices for plant health care including propagation techniques, greenhouse environmental controls, insect and disease identification, invasive exotics, and Integrated Pest Management controls.
  • Certifications in Chainsaw, would be an asset.
  • Effective communication skills, both oral and written, customer service and problem solving skills.
  • Proficient time management and record keeping skills and flexibility in adjusting between a variety of duties.
  • Experience leading teams and/or volunteers, an asset
  • Ability to work with minimal supervision and as part of a team.
  • Must possess an understanding of the MTO’s OTM Book 7 for Temporary Conditions, and proven knowledge of the Occupational Health and Safety Act, Pesticide Act, and other applicable legislation.
  • Demonstrated proficiency with Microsoft Office software, including Word and Excel.
  • Ability to perform a variety of physical activities including lifting, digging, shoveling, raking and climbing ladders and be able to actively participate in daily activities, working within live traffic conditions and adverse weather conditions.


$30.76 per hour

How to apply

Qualified applicants are invited to apply using our online application system by Wednesday, March 3, 2021. Please note all applicants must complete the online questionnaire specific to this position at the time they submit their resume and cover letter in order to be considered. Proof of qualifications will be requested at the interview stage.

Please click on the “Apply for this job” button. Instructions will follow.

The City of Guelph is an equal opportunity employer which values diversity in the workplace. We are therefore happy to accommodate any individual needs in keeping with the Ontario Human Rights Code and the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act. If you require an accommodation in order to participate in the hiring process, please contact us to make your needs known in advance.

Personal information collected through the recruitment process will be used solely to determine eligibility for employment. We thank all candidates in advance; however, only those being considered for an interview will be contacted.