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Career and Education Opportunities for Garden Center Managers in Tucson, Arizona

If you want to be a garden center manager, the Tucson, Arizona area offers many opportunities both for education and employment. The national trend for garden center managers sees this job pool growing by about 5.9% over the next eight years. In general, garden center managers plan, organize, direct, and coordinate activities of workers engaged in propagating, cultivating, and harvesting horticultural specialties, such as trees, shrubs, and other plants.

Income for garden center managers is about $32 hourly or $67,090 per year on average in Arizona. Nationally, their income is about $27 hourly or $56,230 annually. Compared with people working in the overall category of Specialized Management, people working as garden center managers in Arizona earn less. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Specialized Management nationally. Garden center managers work in a variety of jobs, including: orchid grower, seed cleaning manager, and range manager.

There are twenty-one schools of higher education in the Tucson area, including one within twenty-five miles of Tucson where you can get a degree to start your career as a garden center manager. Garden center managers usually hold a Bachelor's degree, so you can expect to spend about four years training to become a garden center manager if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Garden Center Manager

Garden Center Manager video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, garden center managers plan, organize, direct, and coordinate activities of workers engaged in propagating, cultivating, and harvesting horticultural specialties, such as trees, shrubs, and other plants.

Garden center managers tour work areas to monitor work being done, to inspect crops, and to review plant and soil conditions. They also inspect facilities and equipment for signs of disrepair, and perform needed maintenance work. Equally important, garden center managers have to explain and enforce safety regulations and policies. They are often called upon to identify plants as well as problems such as diseases and insect pests. They are expected to direct clerical and marketing efforts. Finally, garden center managers decide on types and quantities of horticultural plants to be grown, on the basis of budgets, projected sales volumes, and/or executive directives.

Every day, garden center managers are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for garden center managers to decide on and purchase seeds, plant nutrients, disease control chemicals, and garden and lawn care equipment. They are often called upon to furnish data to customers on the care of trees and lawns. They also position and regulate plant irrigation systems, and program environmental and irrigation control computers. They are sometimes expected to cut and prune trees, shrubs and plants. Somewhat less frequently, garden center managers are also expected to talk with horticultural personnel so as to plan facility renovations or additions.

Garden center managers sometimes are asked to decide on plant growing conditions, such as greenhouses or natural settings, and set planting and care schedules. And finally, they sometimes have to hire employees, and train them in gardening techniques.

Like many other jobs, garden center managers must be reliable and be able to take change and lead.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Tucson include:

  • Construction Foreman. Plan, direct, or budget, usually through subordinate supervisory personnel, activities concerned with the construction and maintenance of structures, facilities, and systems. Participate in the conceptual development of a construction project and oversee its organization, scheduling, and implementation.
  • Legislator. Develop laws and statutes at the Federal, State, or local level.
  • Natural Resources Specialist. Plan, direct, or coordinate activities in such fields as life sciences, physical sciences, and research and development in these fields.
  • Social Service Coordinator. Plan, organize, or coordinate the activities of a social service program or community outreach organization. Oversee the program or organization's budget and policies regarding participant involvement, program requirements, and benefits. Work may involve directing social workers, counselors, or probation officers.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Garden Center Manager Training

University of Arizona - Tucson, AZ

University of Arizona, 1401 E University, Tucson, AZ 85721-0066. University of Arizona is a large university located in Tucson, Arizona. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 38,057 students and an admission rate of 81%. University of Arizona has a bachelor's degree program in Horticultural Science which graduated one student in 2008.


Manager of Quality/Organizational Excellence: The Certified Manager of Quality/Organizational Excellence is a professional who leads and champions process-improvement initiatives’ everywhere from small businesses to multinational corporations’ that can have regional or global focus in a variety of service and industrial settings.

For more information, see the American Society for Quality website.

Accredited Farm Manager: Farm Managers offer professional management services to farmland owners to help them optimize the returns from their asset.

For more information, see the American Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers website.

Business and Employer Services - Professional Certification: Professional certification exam for Business and Employer Services in workforce development.

For more information, see the Dynamic Works Institute website.

Certified Manager: Certified Manager certification is valued for the credibility and recognition it brings to managers and the organizations for which they work.

For more information, see the Institute of Certified Professional Managers website.

Certified Ornamental Lanscape Professional: Earn the Certified Ornamental Landscape Professional (COLP) designation by completing the "Principles of Landscape Tree & Shrub Maintenance" self-study course.

For more information, see the Professional Landcare Network website.

Certified Associate in Project Management: As project management grows in scope, importance and recognition, so do the related career and credential options available to you.

For more information, see the Project Management Institute website.

Program Management Professional: Project Management Institute's newest credential is specifically developed to acknowledge the qualifications of the professional who leads the coordinated management of multiple projects and ensures the ultimate success of a program.

For more information, see the Project Management Institute website.


Tucson, Arizona
Tucson, Arizona photo by Howcheng

Tucson is situated in Pima County, Arizona. It has a population of over 541,811, which has grown by 11.3% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Tucson, 88, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Tucson are priced at $179,100 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, five hundred sixty-five new homes were built in Tucson, down from 1,131 the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Tucson are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, accommodation and food services, and educational services. The average commute to work is about 22 minutes. More than 22.9% of Tucson residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 9.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Tucson is 9.2%, which is less than Arizona's average of 9.3%.

The percentage of Tucson residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 44.9%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Southern Baptist Convention and the LDS (Mormon) Church.

Tucson is home to the Arizona Correctional Training Facility and the Silverbell Golf Course as well as Vista del Pueblo Park and Verde Meadows Park. Shopping centers in the area include Gaslight Square Shopping Center, Grant Park Shopping Center and Grant Plaza South Shopping Center. Visitors to Tucson can choose from LA Quinta, Casa Tierra Adobe B & B Inn and Best Western Executive Inn for temporary stays in the area.