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Sole Gardener – Live Out – EC4902

From English Country Gardeners

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Sole Gardener required

This is an exciting opportunity for a committed and imaginative person to take over management of a celebrated garden in Devon following the planned departure of the current postholder. Designed by the world renowned Arne Maynard, this private garden has featured in numerous national publications and remains a visitor highlight as part of the National Garden Scheme.   We are looking for someone keen to develop a long term career in horticulture by contributing to the further development of this unique and celebrated property. The ideal candidate for the post will be energetic and genuinely passionate about gardening in all its aspects, having good plant knowledge and horticultural skills but also with some management experience and excellent communication skills.  The successful applicant will have assistance provided on a part-time basis by a dedicated and knowledgeable local gardener, as well as specialist contractors where necessary, with the possibility of a full-time apprentice in the near future.

Now an established garden of approximately five acres set within a larger area of traditionally managed hay meadows, the garden demonstrates how contemporary design can be integrated into a traditional setting.  The ancient house already had the structure of a walled garden attached to the house prior to Arne Maynard’s renovation and re-design in 2008.  The expertise and knowledge of the lead gardener is relied upon to maintain the look and feel that has attracted so much deserving attention through the year. A heavy bespoke oak gate, inspired by wooden spindles from within the house, gives way to a walled garden where there are borders planted with fragrant lavender, violas, geraniums and mature yew topiaries.  Beyond this is a large kitchen garden of 22 raised beds, a knot garden, orchards, sunken greenhouse, cold frames and architectural oak fruit cages.  The kitchen garden is run organically with the no-dig method and produces vegetables for the house throughout the year, with the greenhouse being utilised for tender crops and propagation.  The kitchen garden also contains cut flowers, trained fruit trees, topiary and parterre beds. 

Annually in May, 5000 bulbs including 2500 tulips and hundreds of camassias create a spectacle in the flower meadow and contribute to continued public interest in the garden, year on year.  The formal gardens and main house are set within a further 10-acres of wildflower meadows and paddocks, the latter being grazed by sheep and managed by a local farmer and associated contractors. 

The successful applicant will have overall management responsibility of the garden in all its aspects and will also be expected to conduct up to 12 NGS group visits each year.  The successful applicant must be willing and able to look after various non-horticultural aspects of the estate including a small brood of chickens, basic garden DIY where necessary (repair of fruit cages, fences etc.) and management of the garden budget. Applicants for this position must possess academic training in horticulture, preferably at RHS Level 3 or above, and extensive knowledge of plants and hands-on garden management.  Plant propagation, glasshouse work, kitchen gardening and extensive ornamental plant management will all play a part in the post holder’s day-to-day working life.  Applicants must be physically fit, with the ability to operate and undertake basic maintenance of garden machinery, willingness and ability to provide direction to others, and have the flexibility in approach required to ensure the smooth running of the property. 

SALARY:       Circa £30,000 – £35,000 DOE
LOCATION:  East Devon
JOB No:         EC4902

If this Sole Gardener vacancy is of interest, please apply or contact Mark Read on 01233 733510 or info@englishcountrygardeners.co.uk.

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Thank you for the interest you have shown in this Sole Gardener vacancy.  Unfortunately, due to the high volume of applications that we receive, it is not possible to respond to every one.  Therefore, unless you hear from us within the next 14 days, your application for this Sole Gardener vacancy will have been unsuccessful.

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