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Hiring: Farm and Garden Assistants
Employer: Strathmere Farms Inc
Location: North Gower (Ottawa), Ontario

Strathmere is looking for full-time or part time support staff for its fruit and vegetable farming operations and extensive ornamental gardens. Strathmere is a country estate in Rural South Ottawa hosting weddings, conferences, events and a spa with restaurant.

Since 2004, Strathmere has been developing a fruit and vegetable farm to supply its banqueting kitchens with fresh, seasonal fruit, vegetables, herbs, edible flowers and honey. Currently, there are about 2 acres of fruits, vegetables, and flowers as well as a 1500 sq ft greenhouse and 8 beehives. In addition, we have numerous perennial flower gardens and landscapes throughout the 30 acre property. The farm and gardens are not certified organic, but are managed primarily in accordance with organic standards, with an emphasis on improving soil, diversity and managing the landscape as an ecosystem.

Strathmere farm and garden assistants will operate under management of its lead grower, Colin Lundy.

This position starts in July (ASAP) and will ideally run until approximately the end of October, or into November, depending on fall weather. However, we would be open to hire students available only until school year begins. While this is a seasonal position, we would welcome applicants interested in returning year after year for full season work, offering an opportunity to develop and hone farming, gardening, and landscaping skills.

Full time hours are Monday to Friday, predominantly 8am to 4pm with about 1 hour for lunch.

Candidates should be:

  • Already be residing and authorized to work in Canada (We do not have the capacity or resources to sponsor workers from outside Canada).
  • Dependable, yet flexible, and willing to commit for the full work period.
  • Able to work hard physically, outside, under a variety of climatic conditions:
  • Able to lift (50lbs), squat, bend, kneel, reach, carry, push, etc.
  • Having proper footwear, sun and rain protection.
  • Focused and able to adapt to a variety of situations.
  • Enthusiastic about plants both beautiful and edible, and motivated/committed to strive and work efficiently.
  • Prior knowledge and experience with gardening using organic methods are preferred but not required.
  • Able to follow instructions and carry out tasks to completion while attaining a high standard of quality in an efficient amount of time.
  • Able to work well in a team as well as independently.
  • A good communicator:
  • Communicating when a task is completed and a new one needed.
  • Asking questions about the proper completion of tasks.
  • Working with Strathmere Chefs to ensure they have the produce needed each week
  • Welcoming Strathmere visitors into the garden and answering their many questions.
  • Having a valid driver’s licence and own transportation is required (Strathmere does not have staff housing and is not accessible by public transit).

Tasks include: Seeding, bed preparation, garden building/renovating, transplanting, irrigating, weeding, mulching, pest management, harvesting, pruning, shrub and tree care, grass cutting, seed saving, composting, processing/packing, using and caring for tools/equipment, record keeping, among other tasks associated with fruit and vegetable farming and flower gardening. Other possible tasks include beehive management and operating a small tractor (based on interest and assessment).

In return, Strathmere's lead growers will provide:

  • All the tools needed to complete tasks given.
  • Training and guidance.
  • Mentorship and education about organic garden management.
  • The opportunity to offer feedback and advice to improve management
  • An amicable, understanding, and safe work environment.

In addition, Strathmere will provide:

  • A wage for employment commensurate of experience.
  • The starting wage is $15
  • Additional training required of Strathmere staff.
  • Perks such as surplus produce from gardens and occasional lunches from Strathmere’s catering kitchen.

To apply, please email a resume, including cover letter and contact info for two references, to:

Please put “Attn: Colin Lundy - application for gardens employment” in the subject line of your email.

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Current status: Open/apply now.   Date posted: Jul 18 2022    ID: 65126