Field Manager Grateful Gardeners LLC
- Date Posted February 06, 2023
- Location Poolesville, MD
- Category Agriculture
- Job type Full-Time
Grateful Gardeners is an organic, sustainable, local cut flower farm located in Poolesville, MD. Our principles, which we will always prioritize over profit, involve giving back to our earth, our community, and to ourselves. We believe strongly in the power of collaboration and educating people on the appeal of flowers and nature in general. Our mission is to provide seasonal, organic, and locally grown flowers to the DC, Maryland, and Virginia region that last longer, are competitively priced, easy to order, and reduce the environmental impact.
Grateful Gardeners is a woman owned business, comprised of Sarah Daken, President, CEO, and Co-founder. Tom Precht is the VP, COO, and Co-founder. We are professionals, having worked in the legal field and scientific industry for several years. We’ve become disenchanted with our corporate jobs and wish to get back to what makes us truly happy, growing beautiful plants.
We currently grow tens of thousands of stems in a multitude of varieties of flowers on about 1/2 of an acre. We sell our blooms to local floral designers for weddings and other events, to “brick and mortar” florists for their daily bouquets, to the Old Dominion Flower Cooperative that we are members of, and to national distributors of bouquets, like Urban Stems. We practice organic and sustainable methods, like no-till, worm tea application, cover crop usage, Aquaponics growing, and only using all OMRI listed products on the farm.
Our goals over the next 5 years are to achieve $1,000,000 in gross revenue and $100,000 in net profit, attain over 150 customers comprised of florists, floral designers and national bouquet distributors, construct a 30’ x 100’ greenhouse and a state-of-the-art aquaponics system growing flowers year round, and earn $50,000 or more in revenue via non-flower, value added products, like tuber and rooted cutting sales.
Flowers are almost universally loved by both givers and receivers of them. The Society of American Florists (SAF) has concluded that 88% of people giving flowers reported that it “made them happy” and that 89% of people could recall the last time someone gave them flowers. The floral industry in total is a $35.2 billion a year market (2017 totals) and has grown tepidly over the last decade as compared to European countries. The floral industry as it stands today is dominated by cheap imports from Central and South America, and thus any growth realized from the floral trade is realized by those countries and not American flower farms. The challenge is to steer consumers away from the cheap, available year-round, but dirty option of foreign flowers. The Produce Marketing Association notes one bright spot is that there is a whole new population of young consumers on the scene who care about the environment, sustainability, and organic practices. It is this demographic that we must find a new way to appeal to through that emotional connection.
Grateful Gardeners is focused on expanding their market reach to more floral designers, and florists in the D.C., Maryland, and Virginia region. We also aim to engage larger distributors of bouquets, like Poppy Flower and Urban Stems. Further, we intend on strengthening our relationship with Old Dominion Flower Cooperative to gain access to even more potential buyers in the DMV region. We plan on doing that via heavy social media engagement, hosting flower workshops on site with designers, attending and presenting at floral events, cold calling on designers and florists offering a free bucket of blooms, expanding the reach of our website and newsletter, and collaborating with designers and regional and national flower distributors. Our ambitious goal is that in 10 years we will be closing in on 5% of the D.C., Maryland, and Virginia floral market, and approaching revenues of $5 million.Job description
Grateful Gardeners is a 34 acre flower farm in Poolesville, Maryland. Owned and operated by Tom Precht and Sarah Daken since 2018. Our farm needs a fulltime field manager! Duties Required: farm planning, field work, weed and pest management, all planting, staking, irrigation and support structures for over an acre of cut flower production. Duties will also include management of harvesting, overseeing any and all other field employees, management of a weekly farmers market on Saturday mornings, general maintenance of farm equipment, repairs and projects to facilitate seamless day to day operations.
This is a full-time position with an expectation of a year round commitment of 40 hours per week, with days and times to be agreed upon by the parties.
A bachelors degree in life sciences
At least 2 years of agricultural experience
Must live within 35 miles of our farm; 17240 Edwards Ferry Rd. Poolesville, MD 20837
A valid driver's license is required to fulfill job duties.
We require consent to a background check in the final stage of the interview process. Not all previous infractions will automatically disqualify a candidate.
Can lift at least 50 lbs
Capable of working in hot and cold outdoor temperatures
At least 1 full season of flower farming experience
A bachelors degree in horticulture
Advanced degree a plus
Research experience a plus
Mechanical and Equipment knowledge and repair skills a plus
Excellent communication skills
Excellent customer service skills
Flexibility, resiliency, passionate, kind, helpful, and generousCompensation this position is : salaried, 50k-75k Application instructions