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Job Title : Horticultural Apprentice
Employer : Inner Guidance and retreat centre
Location : Lavenham, Suffolk, CO10 9PB
Position Type : Apprenticeship
Sector : Horticulture
Vacancy Reference : VAC-01528
Vacancy Short Description : A fantastic opportunity to begin a career in horticulture within a unique setting.


Qualifications Required : Entry onto the apprenticeship is subject to a thorough initial assessment to establish course suitability. Applicants should have at least 4 GCSEs including English and Maths at grades A-C or 9- 4. Apprentices need to be employed for minimum of 30 hours a week in the industry with a contract of employment.
Proof of qualifications will be required before you can be accepted onto the apprenticeship.
PLEASE NOTE: Those without the stated entry requirements or awaiting GCSE/GCSE retake grades, may be offered an appointment to come into college (Easton or Otley campus) and sit an online assessment to confirm program suitability.
Vacancy Full Description : Required skills, knowledge and behaviours to complete this apprenticeship

Core knowledge - have an understanding of:
Industry understanding; the importance and benefits of green-space and the types of horticultural skills appropriate to different businesses and cultural sites.
Business; business policies, vision and values. Workers’ contribution to earning profit and awareness of commercial pressure. Understanding of how project management informs a team to achieve objectives.
Communication; the importance of clear communication. Knowledge of different forms of communication aids and their use. The value of effective and timely communication in customer care.
Health and safety; health and safety regulation, legislation, policy and procedure and the responsibility of workers. Knowledge of hazards and working to strict health, safety, quality and environmental (HSQE) processes particularly appropriate to horticultural sites.
Environmental; waste and waste reduction/recycling and environmental best practice. Prevention and control of local pollution incidents.
Plant growth and development; plant nutrition and plant requirements. The principles of germination, photosynthesis, respiration and transpiration (the science of plant growth). How to care for plants correctly in different environments. The relationship between environmental conditions and plant growth.
Tools, equipment and machinery; correct tools, equipment and machinery required for the job and the importance of maintenance / regular checks of these items to ensure they remain in good working order. Legal requirement of training by a competent person and familiarity with operator training and certification requirements.
Vegetation control; how to control vegetation and methods of site clearance and removal of vegetation.
Biosecurity; biosecurity and phytosanitary measures for pests and diseases and how these apply to work sites. Awareness of invasive alien species that may impact work methods.
Plant identification; plant identification by scientific names including genus, species and cultivar. Know why and how plants are identified.
Soil science; why, when and how to cultivate soils for differing purposes. Different growing media and mulches. How to modify soils for plant growth and understand the reasons for cultivation and drainage.
Plant health; basic pest & disease identification/symptoms and control methods.
Core skills - able to:
Communication; communicate with others, including clients, the public and colleagues, this may require basic IT systems use.
Team working; work alone and as part of a team effectively and recognise how all staff are dependent on each other to meet business objectives.
Health and safety; apply relevant health and safety processes and procedures. Implement specific industry information on hazards relevant to horticultural environments. Follow safe systems of work and safety information provided by employer. Implement environmental protection policies and procedures.
Environmental; prevent and control local pollution incidents e.g. use of spill kits.
Planting, plant growth and development; care for plants correctly in different environments, including basic irrigation methods, planting methods and identifying plant deficiencies. Install various soft-landscape materials e.g. shrubs, trees, herbaceous, bedding, grass areas and seed. This will include site preparation, planting, sowing, turfing, preparation of seed beds and mulching.
Soil cultivation; cultivate and improve soils by mechanical methods and by hand, making and amelioration of growing media and soils.
Tools, equipment and machinery; safely use tools e.g. spades, rakes, shovels; equipment e.g. tape measure and spirit level and machinery e.g. pedestrian controlled mowers, hand held strimmer, hedgecutter.
Vegetation control; follow processes and methods of site clearance, using tools and machinery for pruning and vegetation control, including basic turf management. Follow weed control methods.
Maintain hard structures; maintain structures relevant to the business activities.
Site presentation; work to a specified finish.
For the landscape construction role, additional knowledge and skills required:
Knowledge – have an understanding of;
• Methods used to measure and set out a site e.g. use of tape measures and measuring wheels, defining features by using string lines or aerosol markers, the principles in defining site levels using manual or electrical equipment.
• Marking out hazards such as services. Interpretation of construction drawings and specifications e.g. quantities, measurements and positioning. The safe use of abrasive wheels for cutting hard landscape materials during construction.
• Water feature construction methods e.g. linings, pumps, water courses.
Skills – be able to;
• Install various hard-landscape construction features and structures e.g. paths, patios, fences and walls. This will include basic brick laying, paving, timber decking, setting levels, services identification.
• Free hand cutting and bench cutting of hard landscape materials during construction using abrasive wheels.
• Assess and repair hard structures; evaluate hazards and damage and if appropriate carry out repair or report. Examples include broken drainage, rotten timber, cracked paving stone, frost damage brick work.
For the horticulture role additional knowledge and skills required:
Knowledge – have an understanding of;
• The range and application of different growing media for plant production and propagation. The principles and methods of watering techniques including irrigation systems and hand watering.
• Ornamental turf management through basic maintenance; including mowing, aeration, scarification, and top dressing. How to monitor for issues including damage, water issues, pests and diseases
• Ornamental aquatic environments including organic matter control both inside and around the feature and monitoring for any maintenance or safety issues.

Skills – able to;
• Undertake correct pruning techniques for a range of plants.
• Cultivate and maintain soft-landscape elements e.g. shrubs, trees, herbaceous, bedding, grass areas and seed. Assist the establishment of an area of turf through laying, irrigation, maintenance, and allowing appropriate establishment time before use.
• Undertake basic propagation skills including division, cuttings, seed sowing and seed collection.
• Work without causing damage to features present such as irrigation, turf and aquatic environments.
Core behaviours
Health and safety; have a safety-led mind-set for self, colleagues and the public.
Customer care; show dignity, respect and empathy when dealing with others, including clients, the public and colleagues.
Learn: learn behaviours, skills and knowledge effectively from craftspeople and managers.
Attitude; have a positive and motivated attitude towards work, including having pride in one’s work.
Decision making; adopt a pragmatic timely approach by identifying appropriate solutions to practical problems.

Number of Positions Available : 1
Working Week : 30 hours per week 9am -3pm
Salary : £150.00 Per Week
Application Deadline Date : 28/02/2019
Possible Start Date : 14/03/2019
Personal Qualities : Please have a look at our website, we offer a unique service, we have a vegan clean eating menu that all staff participate in when on site with produce from our own gardens. For a candidate who understands and appreciates the life style we offer here, this vacancy would prove especially exciting.
Skills Required : Ideally you will have a passion to begin a career in horticulture, you will have some experience even if it is just helping to look after a family garden or planting fruit and veg.
Other Information : Pay Rates: The current NMW rate for Apprentices is £3.70 per hour with effect from 1st April 2018. This applies to 16-18 year old Apprentices and those aged 19 and over in the first year of their Apprenticeship. For all other Apprentices the Apprentice National Minimum wage appropriate to their age applies. The wage for Apprentices applies to both time spent on the job plus time spent in training. For more information visit:
Apprentices need to be employed for a minimum of 30 hours per week in the industry with a contract of employment

Shortlisting/Interviews - Shortlisting and interviews will take place throughout the duration of the vacancy ad. This may mean that the vacancy could close before the published cut-off date should suitable candidates be found.
Things to consider : Please bear in mind the physical nature of this role.

You will be on your feet for most of the day.

The role is predominantly outdoors so at times you will be hot cold and wet.
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