Position Open: Plant Ecologist for the Green Seattle Partnership

Job Title: Plant Ecologist

Job Number: 243654

Salary: $26.79 – $31.27 Hourly

Location: Parks and Recreation Administration Bldg., 100 Dexter Ave. N., Seattle, Washington

Job Type: Classified Civil Service, Regular, Full-Time

Shift: Day

Department: Seattle Parks and Recreation

Bargaining Unit: Not represented

Closing Date/Time: Tue. 08/10/10 11:59 PM Pacific Time

This position will provide expert direction on the implementation and development of the vegetation management programs for Seattle Parks within the Green Seattle Partnership program in various locations citywide. Knowledge of Pacific Northwest native plant communities and how they function, native plant identification, urban forest restoration techniques and plant establishment practices, volunteer recruitment and management experience are necessary for this position.

Job Responsibilities:

Establish programs to develop new and ongoing vegetation management projects from the planning stages to implementation in accordance with Seattle Parks and Green Seattle Partnership goals and objectives. Assist with the technical planning and project research design in coordination with department employees, contractors and volunteers. Perform field duties to include planting, watering, weeding and other duties related to vegetation management. Develop specifications and recommend professional contractors for projects, monitor vegetation management work and authorize payment of invoices.  Meet routinely with the public, citizens groups, City staff and other governmental agencies to provide information, analyses and public information materials, and to present project information to the community. Supervise and train employees, Forest Stewards and volunteers for implementation of vegetation management projects. Prepare workload projections and develop budget for contracts and materials needed for vegetation management projects. Prepare and deliver a variety of studies, plans, and reports for Unit and Parks management.


Requires a minimum of two years experience in vegetation management, the ability to supervise, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Botany, Forestry, Zoology or related field (or a combination of education and/or training and/or experience which provides an equivalent background required to perform the work of this class).   A Current Valid Washington State driver’s license.

Additional Information:

A thorough knowledge of all aspects of urban forest management to include: clearing weeds, soil amendments, planting, watering and weeding, long-term maintenance and monitoring. Individuals should have ability to make decisions based on changing priorities.  Must be in good physical condition, as this position requires working outside in all types of weather, and ability to perform labor to include removing invasive plants, moving plants and materials over 35 lbs, hand digging and carrying of tools and equipment over rough terrain. Experience with and knowledge of current safe use of pesticides.  Employees should be flexible, willing to learn new tasks, and possess good customer service skills.

Visit our web site at www.seattle.gov/parks <http://www.seattle.gov/parks>


“Lead with your parks”

City Parks Blog posted an interview with Peter Harnik about his new book, Urban Green: Innovative Parks for Resurgent Cities. He talks about how each city has unique needs for how much and what kind of park space are best. He also talks about innovative park creation in cities that are already “all built out,” and the idea of “park-oriented development” to encourage smart growth and curb sprawl.

The review of the book, from Island Press:

For years American urban parks fell into decay due to disinvestment, but as cities began to rebound—and evidence of the economic, cultural, and health benefits of parks grew— investment in urban parks swelled. The U.S. Conference of Mayors recently cited meeting the growing demand for parks and open space as one of the biggest challenges for urban leaders today. It is now widely agreed that the U.S. needs an ambitious and creative plan to increase urban parklands.

Urban Green explores new and innovative ways for “built out” cities to add much-needed parks. Peter Harnik first explores the question of why urban parkland is needed and then looks at ways to determine how much is possible and where park investment should go. When presenting the ideas and examples for parkland, he also recommends political practices that help create parks.

The book offers many practical solutions, from reusing the land under defunct factories to sharing schoolyards, from building trails on abandoned tracks to planting community gardens, from decking parks over highways to allowing more activities in cemeteries, from eliminating parking lots to uncovering buried streams, and more. No strategy alone is perfect, and each has its own set of realities. But collectively they suggest a path toward making modern cities more beautiful, more sociable, more fun, more ecologically sound, and more successful.

Sustainable Redmond

Sustainable Redmond is having its first few public events this month! If you are a member of the Redmond community and would like to get involved in this exciting new group, check out their website, and this message from them below.

On July 22nd from 7-9 pm, at the Redmond Library, in Meeting Room 2, we are hosting a talk by Cecile Andrews on“Living Sustainably: Simpler, Slower, Smaller”. Cecile is the author of three books related to sustainability and voluntary simplicity: the recently released “Less is More”, along with “Slow is Beautiful” and “The Circle of Simplicity”.

Sustainable Redmond is a newly formed group with a mission to be a catalyst for moving Redmond ’s citizens, businesses, and local government towards sustainability, through education, advocacy, and community events. Check us out at www.sustainabledredmond.org. We are also currently forming interest groups related to various aspects of sustainability, open to all. Our current list of interest groups includes:

  • Food, gardening and the natural environment
  • Energy efficiency and energy generation
  • Alternative transportation
  • Sustainability of local businesses, schools and government offices
  • Measures of sustainability (water quality, greenhouse gases, waste)
  • Life-style choices: buying local, consuming less, etc.

Take Your Daily Forest Bath

The New York Times’ recent article, The Claim: Exposure to Plants and Parks Can Boost Immunity, gives some good advice: get outside and bathe yourself in the benefits provided by plants and trees…and forests!

With summer finally arriving and the sun gracing our skies in the Northwest, there’s even more opportunity to get outside and seek some shade, marvel at some of the wildflowers, and take a nap under a tree. A few of my favorite stress-releasing parks are the Washington Park Arboretum, Lincoln Park in West Seattle, and Hartman Park in Redmond. The Arboretum has miles of trails to explore and countless trees and shrubs to connect with your inner tree identification geek, you can stroll along the water and through the forest at Lincoln Park for hours (and even take a swim in the heated saltwater pool), and Hartman Park has one of the most scenic soccer fields around.

Where is your favorite place to relax outdoors?

After you take your daily dose of forest benefits, take a peek at a new website and fantastic resource for learning more about the many, many benefits of our urban forests: Green Cities: Good Health. It’s the latest effort from Kathy Wolf and is chock-full of great information.

Now, go outside and soak in the trees!