Museum Summary

Plimoth Patuxet Museums (PPM) is an outdoor, living history museum that provides powerful, personal encounters with history built on thorough research about the Wampanoag People and the Colonial English community in the 1600s. Today, Plimoth Patuxet provides an engaging and experiential outdoor and indoor learning environment on its main campus; at Mayflower II at State Pier on Plymouth’s waterfront, and at the Plimoth Grist Mill on Town Brook. Our permanent exhibits tell the complex and interwoven stories of two distinct people - English and Wampanoag. The main exhibits are enhanced with an exciting array of special events, public programs and workshops that offer a rich and diverse exploration of the 17th-century.

Plimoth Patuxet is an equal opportunity employer. We value diversity and are committed to creating a welcoming and inclusive environment for all employees.

Position Summary

This is an opportunity to work at one of the country's most prestigious living history museums. Operating on a remarkable property overlooking Cape Cod Bay, Plimoth Patuxet Museums brings the story of America’s early foundation to life for hundreds of thousands of visitors each year.

Our gardens are a unique heritage landscape for current and future generations to experience and enjoy. This position is responsible for the upkeep and development of all the Museum’s historical gardens. By maintaining excellent standards of presentation of the gardens and landscapes you will contribute to guests’ enjoyment of this unique outdoor Museum. We are seeking an individual who will greet with energy and enthusiasm the challenges and opportunities inherent in the planning and maintenance of the museum’s historical gardens.

This is very much a hands-on job and most of the work during spring, summer and fall is the day-to-day physical work of maintaining the gardens. You will supervise, assign and direct the work of staff and volunteers working on the Museum’s gardens and greenhouse.

You will need to have the requisite training, skills and knowledge, perhaps through working in a similar role, and/or through relevant educational experience. You may have a background in estate management or landscape gardening and be seeking to develop your skills into a historical garden context, or you may already be experienced in working in historical public gardens. You should have a verifiable reputation for excellence in your work. You are an innovator, and possess the energy, vision and drive to take the Museum’s gardens to the next level and achieve great results.

We are looking for someone with sound horticultural skills including knowledge of the cultivation of seasonal bedding plants and herbaceous borders. You will oversee the development and maintenance of the gardens to the highest standards to ensure our gardens and landscapes have year-round beauty for our guests to enjoy. You are equally effective and efficient working independently and as part of a highly collaborative team.

If you have the relevant skills, proven experience, and are committed to high standards in your work; if you are passionate about maintaining and developing beautiful historical and traditional New England gardens; if you thrive on getting dirt under your fingernails, enjoy working in a busy outdoor environment in all kinds of weather; and you see yourself as part of a multi-disciplinary team; and are excited about sharing your vision and skills with the public; then this may be the perfect job for you.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

To ensure that the Gardens continue to develop at a lively pace, the post requires a combination of dedication to the practice and continued development of high quality gardening skills exercised through hands-on gardening. In this position you will be expected to provide high quality garden maintenance and presentation at all times through:

  • Hands-on seasonal maintenance of flower, shrub, woodland gardens with specialized heritage plants, including trees, hedges, shrubs, roses, climbers, herbaceous plants and annuals.

  • Provide garden training to staff so they can correctly maintain the historical gardens and ensure that skills are used by staff and procedures followed

  • Manage and supervise staff, assigning daily work, provide scheduling information, departmental training, coaching, feedback, and, if needed, disciplinary action. Interview applicants as needed

  • Direct the work of staff, volunteers and interns working in the greenhouse and/or gardens

  • Formative, seasonal and regenerative pruning of deciduous and evergreen trees, shrubs, climbers and hedges

  • Safe use of garden machinery as necessary including mowers, trimmers, saws, and other machinery

  • Develop a broad familiarity with the majority of plants within the gardens, and be completely familiar with those in any areas for which you may be directly responsible

  • Develop an understanding of the Museum’s gardens’ history and plant collections

  • Oversee and maintain the Museum’s greenhouse; plant seeds to prepare for transplanting into the gardens in the spring

  • Understand the diversity of wildlife within the gardens to ensure optimum care of the gardens’ flora and fauna

  • Lead public programs (e.g. garden walks and talks), special events or demonstrations, plant

  • With Facilities Manager, monitor grounds maintenance or arboricultural contractors on site

  • Work to ensure the safety of staff, trainees, volunteers and visitors in the gardens

  • Responsible for the maintenance of paths, gates, garden beds, and other hard landscaping

  • Maintain accurate records and labeling of the plant collection

This outline description focuses on the primary duties of the position. It is not designed nor intended to include all duties and responsibilities inherent in satisfactory performance of the position. Management reserves the right to revise this job description from time to time as needed.

Required Skills

  • Widely based and broadly experienced in garden management and maintenance, exercised through hands on gardening with imagination and flair combined with an enthusiasm for gardening, with advanced gardening skills and horticultural knowledge

  • Appreciation and understanding of the historical record in determining garden design

  • Excellent communication skills;

  • You should have a verifiable reputation for excellence in your work

  • Proven practical experience of the cyclical maintenance of a high quality gardens

  • Ability to undertake seasonal maintenance work of gardens with heirloom plant collections

  • Superb time management skills with an ability to work independently with minimal supervision; pro-active in problem-solving, willing and able to lead and take initiative

  • Capable of undertaking all aspects of horticultural work and the considerable physical demands of the job

  • Proven experience of the cyclical maintenance of a large high quality landscape garden or estate

  • Some familiarity with the cultivation of a broad range of trees, shrubs, bulbs, annual and herbaceous plants

  • Reliability, dependability and punctuality

  • Patience and imperturbability

  • Courteousness

  • Honesty and integrity

  • Fluency in English; ability to communicate clearly and provide direction to staff and volunteers

Education and Experience

  • Ability to provide supervision and training of staff, apprentices or interns, and volunteers; previous project management and/or direct supervisory experience preferred

  • B.A. or B.S. – Degree or substantial training in horticulture preferred, but related experience may substitute

Preferred but not required

  • Knowledge of early colonial gardens, and/or early American garden history, and/or New England garden history; willingness to learn more about the subject.

  • Ability to identify and treat appropriately a range of common horticultural pests and diseases

Physical Requirements

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of the job. This position requires primarily outdoor work. Duties include:

  • Work sitting, standing, walking, bent over or kneeling; crouching; reaching; some lifting and moving of objects; standing for extended periods.

  • Perform physical activities in a variety of environmental conditions that require moderate to maximum strength including climbing, lifting, balancing, bending, kneeling, walking, and handling of materials weighing up to 50 lbs.

  • Comfortable working on your feet for long periods of time

Work Environment

The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. The workplace is not climate controlled. This position requires outdoor work in a variety of conditions. Work may be performed in dusty and smoky environments; in poorly lit areas; in weather that can be cold, rainy, hot and humid. The noise level in the workplace varies from quiet to loud. Must be comfortable occasionally working in naturalized areas where poison ivy and stinging insects may be present

The Museum is open 7 days a week April through the end of November. This position requires working at least one weekend day per week as well as several holidays. Typical hours are 9:00am - 5:00pm, five days a week. Flexibility in work hours and days off is required. Depending on the season, this position may include working additional night/weekend hours or days as needed. Whenever working on a holiday is necessary, a manager will inform employees at least one week in advance if they’re expected to work on a holiday.

The Museum may also schedule "all-hands on" days such as Indigenous People's Day/Columbus Day and Thanksgiving. Advance notice will be given for "all-hands on" days.

The Museum respects the religious, and cultural beliefs and practices of all employees. On request, The Museum will strive to make an accommodation for such observances when a reasonable accommodation is available, and does not create an undue hardship on the Museum.

Additional Requirements

  • Must be available to work some weekend days and holidays as requested by your supervisor. Flexibility in work hours and days off is required. Occasional evening work

  • Must be able to drive self to offsite events and locations. Current valid driver’s license required

Core Commitments

Whether part-time or full-time, year-round or seasonal, all staff and volunteers at Plimoth Patuxet advance the Museum’s educational mission and strategic goals. They uphold the Museum’s core values and principles in their work and in all of their interactions with the public and with coworkers. This commitment helps to ensure that Plimoth Patuxet's reputation for excellence is maintained and that, as stewards of the Museum, we are helping to create a relevant and sustainable future for Plimoth Patuxet Museums. The core principles that guide us in our work are:

  • Safety and Comfort

  • Compassionate Customer Engagement

  • Professional Excellence

  • Personal Accountability

  • Advance a Culture of Philanthropy

  • Teamwork

Interested candidates are encouraged to apply by submitting a PDF file of your resume, and cover letter to, or by submitting them by US mail to the following address:

Plimoth Patuxet Museums
Attn: Human Resources
137 Warren Avenue
Plymouth, MA 02360