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OSP Occupational Profile

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NOC Code: NOC Code: 8432 Occupation: Nursery and greenhouse workers
Occupation Description: Occupation Description:
Nursery and greenhouse workers plant, cultivate and harvest trees, shrubs, flowers and plants, and serve nursery and greenhouse customers. They are employed in indoor and outdoor nurseries and greenhouses. Nursery and greenhouse workers plant, cultivate and harvest trees, shrubs, flowers and plants, and serve nursery and greenhouse customers. They are employed in indoor and outdoor nurseries and greenhouses.

  • Click on any of the Essential Skills to view sample workplace tasks for this occupation.
  • Scroll down the page to get information on career planning, education and training, and employment and volunteer opportunities.

Table will display the Skill Level for the Noc specified
Essential Skills Essential Skills Levels
Reading Reading 1 2 3 4
Writing Writing 1 2
Document Use Document Use 1 2 3
Digital Technology Digital Technology 1 2
Oral Communication Oral Communication 1 2 3
Money Math Money Math 1 2
Scheduling or Budgeting and Accounting Scheduling or Budgeting and Accounting 1 2
Measurement and Calculation Measurement and Calculation 1 2
Data Analysis Data Analysis 1 2 3
Numerical Estimation Numerical Estimation 1 2
Job Task Planning and Organizing Job Task Planning and Organizing 1 2
Decision Making Decision Making 1 2 3
Problem Solving Problem Solving 1 2
Finding Information Finding Information 1 2
Critical Thinking Critical Thinking 1 2


  • The skill levels represented in the above chart illustrate the full range of sample tasks performed by experienced workers and not individuals preparing for or entering this occupation for the first time.
  • Note that some occupational profiles do not include all Numeracy and Thinking Essential Skills.

If you would like to print a copy of the chart and sample tasks, click on the "Print Occupational Profile" button at the top of the page.


Reading
  • Read instructions and warnings on labels, e.g. read storage instructions on labels affixed to fungicides and pesticides. (1)
  • Read reminders and short notes from co-workers, e.g. read short notes from supervisors to learn about upcoming meetings. (1)
  • Read short comments on a variety of forms, such as bills of lading and inventory control forms. (1)
  • Read a variety of instructions and procedures, e.g. read step-by-step instructions to learn how to use personal protective equipment and mix and apply fertilizers. (2)
  • Read Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) to learn how to safely handle fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides and other dangerous chemicals. (2)
  • Read a variety of memos and meeting minutes, e.g. read memos to learn about changes to store hours and minutes from joint health and safety committee meetings to learn about changes to spraying procedures. (2)
  • Read reference and equipment manuals, e.g. read reference manuals to learn about essential plant nutrients and instructions on the operation of potting and labeling machinery. (3)
  • Read brochures and magazine and website articles, e.g. read magazine and website articles to learn about new silviculture trends and techniques. (3)
  • Read instructions for the operation of point-of-sale equipment, such as scanners, scales, touchscreens and cash registers. (3)
  • Read standards and regulations, e.g. read standards issued by workers' compensation boards to learn the rules governing the application of pesticides. (4)
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Writing
  • Write brief entries in logbooks, e.g. write brief comments in logbooks to describe work performed and incidents that may have occurred. (1)
  • Write short notes to co-workers, e.g. write short notes to co-workers to inform them about items that are out of stock. (1)
  • Write short comments in forms, e.g. write planting instructions on invoices. (1)
  • Write short reports, e.g. write short reports to describe incidents that resulted in damaged property and injuries to workers. (2)
  • Write short notes to customers, e.g. write email messages to follow-up on customers' questions. (2)
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Document Use
  • Locate data in a variety of lists, e.g. view lists to locate data, such as names, species, sizes and prices. (1)
  • Recognize symbols located on labels and material packaging, e.g. observe hazard symbols on container labels to learn about the dangers of fungicides. (1)
  • Enter data into logbooks, e.g. enter data, such as dates, times, frequencies and amounts, into activity logs. (1)
  • Enter data into forms, e.g. enter data, such as dates, times, costs and quantities, into invoices and inventory forms. (2)
  • Locate data in charts and tables, e.g. locate specifications, such as application rates, in herbicide charts and product application-rate tables. (2)
  • Interpret landscape drawings to determine the location of trees, shrubs, plants and design features, such as retaining walls and ponds. (3)
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Digital Technology
  • Send text messages to customers and co-workers. (1)
  • Use two-way radios to communicate with co-workers. (1)
  • Operate point-of-sale equipment, such as electronic cash registers, bar scanners, scales and touchscreens, to complete financial transactions. (1)
  • Use calculators and personal digital assistant (PDA) devices to complete numeracy-related tasks, such as calculating material requirements. (1)
  • Use the Internet to access training courses and seminars offered by trainers, suppliers, employers and associations. (2)
  • Use the Internet to access blogs and forums to seek information from experts about unusual plant diseases and treatment options. (2)
  • Use the Internet to access bulletins, weather alerts, industry news and equipment specifications. (2)
  • Use databases to retrieve contact information, dates, inventory numbers and equipment maintenance schedules. (2)
  • Use communication software to exchange email with suppliers, co-workers and customers. (2)
  • Use spreadsheet software to enter inventory counts and monitor quantities of supplies, such as fertilizers. (2)
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Oral Communication
  • Listen to announcements made over two-way radios and public address systems. (1)
  • Greet customers and provide them with information about products and services. (1)
  • Speak to suppliers to learn about products, prices and delivery schedules. (1)
  • Exchange information with co-workers, e.g. talk to supervisors to learn about job assignments and to co-ordinate activities and schedules. (2)
  • Participate in group discussions, e.g. discuss nursery arrangements and customer service procedures during staff meetings. (2)
  • Talk to customers about a wide range of topics, e.g. talk to customers about product choices, gardening tips and the appropriateness of plant selections. (2)
  • Provide detailed instructions, e.g. experienced nursery and greenhouse workers provide detailed verbal instructions to first time users of personal protective equipment and pesticide applicators. (3)
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Money Math
  • Receive cash, debit and credit card payments and make change. (1)
  • Calculate amounts owed by customers using factors, such as costs, discounts, taxes and currency exchange rates. (2)
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Scheduling or Budgeting and Accounting
  • Count cash and calculate the value of credit and debit card transactions. (2)
  • Establish pruning, watering and fertilizing schedules for plants at particular points in their growth cycles. (2)
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Measurement and Calculation
  • Measure and weigh products and goods, e.g. measure the height of trees and bushes using tape measures. (1)
  • Manage inventories of supplies, e.g. reduce inventory counts as consumables, such as herbicides and pesticides, are used. (2)
  • Calculate material requirements, e.g. calculate the amount of concentrate needed to prepare plant food solutions according to proportions outlined on labels. (2)
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Data Analysis
  • Compare measurements to specifications, e.g. compare the height of shrubs to contractor specifications and to price classifications to determine the retail prices. (1)
  • Generate and analyze production statistics, e.g. analyze growth rates of plants to determine the effectiveness of various pesticides, fungicides and fertilizers. (3)
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Numerical Estimation
  • Estimate the ratio of fertilizer to earth when mixing different soils for seedlings and plants. (1)
  • Estimate the amount of fertilizer required for lawns of various dimensions. (2)
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Job Task Planning and Organizing
  • Nursery and greenhouse workers plan their days in conjunction with greenhouse managers and owners who set out general daily and weekly goals. The workers prioritize tasks themselves to meet those goals. Although they have many diverse tasks to perform, such as planting, potting, watering and fertilizing, they must plan their duties so that customer needs come first. This may mean co-ordinating their activities with co-workers to ensure that someone is always available to meet customers. Planning varies with the season, with spring and summer being hectic. (2)
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Decision Making
  • Select gardening methods, e.g. decide how much to prune shrubs and water plants. (1)
  • Select the order of tasks and your priorities, e.g. decide which tasks to complete first by considering priorities and customer requests (2)
  • Decide to accept returns, make exchanges and offer refunds to customers. (2)
  • Decide how much nursery stock to order for the coming seasons. Take into account factors, such as available storage space, past sales and anticipated sales. (3)
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Problem Solving
  • Encounter material shortages, e.g. find there is not enough fungicides and fertilizers. Inform supervisors of the shortages and contact suppliers to arrange deliveries. Perform other work until the necessary supplies arrive. (1)
  • Experience delays due to equipment breakdowns, e.g. find frozen pipes in the greenhouse in the winter. Inform supervisors and repairers about the breakdowns and perform other work until repairs are completed. Attempt to troubleshoot and repair the equipment yourself as appropriate. (2)
  • Encounter unhealthy trees, shrubs, flowers and other plants, e.g. find plants that are withering or dying. Assess the reasons for the problems and take corrective actions, such as increasing waterings. (2)
  • Deal with unsatisfied customers, e.g. deal with customers who blame problems with their plants on the nursery. Assess damage to the plants and explain the factors that may have caused them, such as over or under watering, too much exposure to the sun or insect infestations. Attempt to resolve the complaints to the customers' satisfaction. (2)
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Finding Information
  • Find information on the operation and maintenance of equipment, such as air respirators, by reading instruction manuals and by speaking with suppliers and co-workers. (1)
  • Find information about new products and equipment. Read trade magazines and marketing materials, such as brochures. Discuss new products with suppliers, co-workers and colleagues and conduct research over the Internet. (2)
  • Find information about diseases and pests by conducting research over the Internet and by speaking with exterminators, suppliers, co-workers and colleagues. (2)
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Critical Thinking
  • Evaluate the condition of equipment. Consider how the equipment operates and the results of physical inspections. (2)
  • Judge the effectiveness of products, such as fungicides, fertilizers and herbicides. Consider plant growth and other outcomes of the product's use. (2)
  • Judge the safety of work sites and procedures. Observe risks posed by working at heights, equipment, such as shears, and the application of toxic chemicals. (2)
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