The Internship Program at Stonecrop Gardens
Stonecrop’s Internship Program provides students with the opportunity to know, grow, and use plants in a garden setting. Our goal is for our interns to gain invaluable practical horticultural exposure and experience, as well as a thorough and accurate grounding in all the horticultural skills necessary to a professional in the field.
Our approach is “hands-on,” providing a select few each year with a chance to become part of a team of people who are plant enthusiasts, who love to garden, who love Stonecrop and who want to share this garden with others.
The internship runs from February through December and includes a 40-hour workweek with alternating weekend duties. Compensation includes $400 per week and a shared living situation with other interns in our gatehouse. Please note that since Stonecrop is situated in a remote setting, there is no reliable taxi service or public transportation. Therefore, interns are required to have a valid driver’s licence and a car.
Interested parties should send a letter of intent and résumé for consideration and to receive an application.
To enhance the students’ theoretical foundation, to develop his or her practical knowledge of horticulture, and to build the specialized skills necessary to a professional in the field.
Stonecrop’s display gardens comprise a diverse collection of gardens and plants including woodland and water gardens, a grass garden, raised alpine stone beds, cliff rock gardens, and an enclosed English-style flower garden. Greenhouses include a Conservatory, display Alpine House, small Tropical Room, Pit House with an extensive collection of choice dwarf bulbs, and two growing greenhouses.
Interns will have the opportunity to work in all the above areas on a rotational basis.
Responsibilities include participation in the following:
1. Ornamental Horticulture
- Pest and disease identification, and management
- Labeling, mapping, record keeping
- Selling and public relations
2. Propagation (both for our own display and for sale) of alpine, woodland, and flower garden plants to include:
- Seed collecting, processing, and sowing cuttings – soft, semi, hardwood, and leaf division
3. Greenhouse Management
- Environmental control
- General greenhouse watering
- Care of plants
- Greenhouse hygiene
4. Soil preparation and compost production
5. Watering (indoor and outdoor)
6. Rotating household duties
- All staff share in such routine chores as pot washing and bathroom cleaning.
7. Rotating weekend duty
- All students are to keep a notebook recording day-to-day activities as well as taking notes on tasks to be performed.
9. Garden Party Project
- Interns and staff members research a horticultural topic of their choice and create a project for display at the annual Members’ garden Party in September.
10. Intern Vegetable Plots
- Interns design, install, and maintain a vegetable plot at Stonecrop. Plots are assessed four times per season considering such criteria as productivity, cropping plan, tidiness, and creativity.
11. Plant Identification Tests
- Interns take eight plant identification tests throughout the season and are expected to know the genus, specific epithet, family, country of origin, common name, and plant description (i.e. perennial grass, deciduous conifer, etc.).
12. Lecture Presentation
- Interns prepare and present a 30-minute lecture about a horticultural topic chosen from those offered.
13. Plant of the Day (P.O.D.)
- Each day, interns take 15 minutes to research a plant from the Stonecrop collection. Interns can compile their P.O.D. write-ups to make a comprehensive collection of plants they have learned at Stonecrop.
14. Field Trips
- Interns go on field trips to public and private gardens, and to interesting nurseries. Upon returning from each field trip, interns write essays addressing details of the places visited, plants they learned, comparison of different gardens when appropriate, and aspects of garden design and style.