We're building a new service – your feedback will help us to improve it.

Garden nursery assistant Horticultural assistant, garden centre worker

Garden nursery assistants grow plants in nurseries and garden centres, and advise and serve customers.

Salary, a pound sign Salary: £13,000 to £19,000 average per year
Hours, a clock face Hours: 30 to 40 per week

1. Entry requirements

There are no set entry requirements, but employers will expect you to have a keen interest in plants and horticulture.

Previous experience or qualifications in gardening, horticulture or retail could be helpful.

You could get into this job through an apprenticeship.

Industry bodies Lantra and Grow have more information about horticultural careers.

2. Skills required

You’ll need:

  • customer service skills
  • number skills for handling payments
  • teamworking skills

3. What you'll do

You’ll be:  

  • loading and unloading deliveries
  • pruning, shaping and spacing plants
  • weeding, watering and feeding
  • potting seedlings
  • monitoring plant health and quality
  • re-stocking plant displays
  • serving customers

4. Salary

Starter: £13,000 to £16,000

Experienced: £17,000 to £19,000 (supervisor)

These figures are a guide.

5. Working hours, patterns and environment

You’ll usually work between 30 and 40 hours a week, including weekends and bank holidays.
You’ll be based in a garden centre or plant nursery.

6. Career path and progression

With experience you could become a nursery supervisor.

You may be able to move into horticultural technician work or garden centre management by completing industry qualifications like those from the Royal Horticultural Society.

Related careers

You may be interested in:

Last updated: 16 April 2018

Exam results helpline from 16 to 31 August

Once you've got your exam results, get help from a careers adviser on your options, and what to do next.

Call 0800 100 900

8am to 10pm, 7 days a week

Calls are free from landlines and most mobile numbers.

Follow us on twitter for ongoing support