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Career and Education Opportunities for Greenhouse Assistants in Naperville, Illinois

Greenhouse assistant career and educational opportunities abound in Naperville, Illinois. There are currently 9,840 working greenhouse assistants in Illinois; this should shrink by 1% to 9,740 working greenhouse assistants in the state by 2016. Greenhouse assistants generally work in nursery facilities or at customer location planting, cultivating, and transplanting trees, shrubs, or plants.

Greenhouse assistants earn about $10 hourly or $22,280 per year on average in Illinois and about $8 hourly or $17,960 per year on average nationally. Compared with people working in the overall category of Farming, people working as greenhouse assistants in Illinois earn less. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Farming nationally.

There is one school within twenty-five miles of Naperville where you can study to be a greenhouse assistant, among 166 schools of higher education total in the Naperville area. Greenhouse assistants usually hold a high school diploma or GED, so you can expect to spend only a short time training to become a greenhouse assistant if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Greenhouse Assistant

Greenhouse Assistant video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, greenhouse assistants work in nursery facilities or at customer location planting, cultivating, and transplanting trees, shrubs, or plants.

Greenhouse assistants plant and water plants, shrubs, and trees, using hand tools and gardening tools. They also inspect plants and bud ties to gauge quality. Finally, greenhouse assistants clean work areas, and maintain grounds and landscaping.

Every day, greenhouse assistants are expected to be able to lift, push and move large and heavy objects. They need to use lower back and abdominal strength. It is also important that they twist and stretch their arms and legs to get work done.

It is important for greenhouse assistants to dip cut flowers into disinfectant, count them into bunches, and place them in boxes to ready them for storage and shipping. They are often called upon to move containerized shrubs and trees, using wheelbarrows or tractors. They also harvest plants, and transplant or pot and label them. They are sometimes expected to haul and spread topsoil, fertilizer and other materials to condition soil, using wheelbarrows or carts and shovels. Somewhat less frequently, greenhouse assistants are also expected to fill growing tanks with water.

Greenhouse assistants sometimes are asked to tie and bunch flowers, plants and trees; wrap their roots; and pack them into boxes to fill orders. They also have to be able to trap and destroy pests such as moles and mice, using pesticides And finally, they sometimes have to regulate greenhouse conditions, and indoor and outdoor irrigation systems.

Like many other jobs, greenhouse assistants must be reliable and have exceptional integrity.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Naperville include:

  • Farm Labor Contractor. Recruit, hire, and supervise seasonal or temporary agricultural laborers for a fee. May transport, house, and provide meals for workers.
  • Livestock Farmer. Attend to live farm, ranch, or aquacultural animals that may include cattle, sheep, swine, goats, horses and other equines, poultry, and bees. Attend to animals produced for animal products, such as meat, fur, and honey. Duties may include feeding, watering, herding, grazing, castrating, branding, de-beaking, weighing, and loading animals. May maintain records on animals; examine animals to detect diseases and injuries; assist in birth deliveries; and administer medications, vaccinations, or insecticides as appropriate. May clean and maintain animal housing areas.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Greenhouse Assistant Training

Joliet Junior College - Joliet, IL

Joliet Junior College, 1215 Houbolt Rd, Joliet, IL 60431-8938. Joliet Junior College is a large college located in Joliet, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 14,088 students. Joliet Junior College has an associate's degree program in Agricultural Production Operations which graduated twelve students in 2008.


Arborist / Municipal Specialist: This credential was developed by the ISA and the Society of Municipal Arboriculture for those involved in managing the complex aspect of trees in an urban environment.

For more information, see the International Society of Arboriculture website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Naperville, Illinois

Naperville, Illinois
Naperville, Illinois photo by JohnDBuell

Naperville is located in Dupage County, Illinois. It has a population of over 143,117, which has grown by 11.5% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Naperville, 107, is above the national average. New single-family homes in Naperville are valued at $401,600 on average, which is far greater than the state average. In 2008, one hundred fifty-four new homes were built in Naperville, down from two hundred eighty-one the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Naperville are educational services, health care, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, finance and insurance, and construction. The average travel time to work is about 33 minutes. More than 60.6% of Naperville residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 23.7%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Naperville is 8.1%, which is less than Illinois's average of 10.5%.

The percentage of Naperville residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 58.9%, is more than both the national and state average. Saints Peter and Paul Roman Catholic Church, Saint Thomas The Apostle Church and Bethany Church are some of the churches located in Naperville. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Lutheran Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Naperville is home to the High Grove Business Park and the Spring Brook Golf Course as well as Du Page River Park and Winding Creek Park. Shopping malls in the area include Pebblewood Plaza Shopping Center, Cress Creek Square Shopping Center and Cress Creek Shopping Center. Visitors to Naperville can choose from Fairfield Inn by Marriott, EXEL Inns of Chicago and Country Inn Suites Naperville for temporary stays in the area.