11 Interesting Floral Careers (With Duties and Salaries)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 6 May 2022

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

People that have a strong connection with nature and enjoy working with and learning about plant life may consider a career path where they can work with flowers. There are many jobs available that can give you the opportunity to cultivate and arrange flowers, such as a floral designer, professional gardener and horticulturist. Learning about different floral careers may help you choose a career path that's suited to your strengths and interests. In this article, we explore eleven floral careers, discuss their key responsibilities and outline their national average salary.

11 interesting floral careers

Here's some useful information relating to eleven floral careers that may interest you if you're pursuing a career in the floral industry:

1. Floral designer

National average salary: $49,112 per year

Primary duties: Floral designers use their artistic skills to make decorative arrangements, such as bouquets and corsages, in a way that appeals to the requests of clients. They also use their knowledge to help customers select the right flowers. For example, they might recommend carnations to someone looking for long-lasting flowers or inform a customer that having lilies in the house may be toxic for cats. Floral designers can work in flower shops, grocery stores and retail businesses and often provide their services to those looking to add flower decorations to a wedding, restaurant, funeral or any other events and businesses.

Some other key responsibilities of a floral designer include scheduling appointments to restock a company's flower supply, taking inventory, making deliveries and organising purchases with wholesale flower facilities.

2. Garden associate

National average salary: $28.22 per hour

Primary duties: A garden associate is someone who works as a customer representative for a garden departmental store. A significant part of the job typically includes helping customers with their purchasing decisions by sharing product knowledge. This might involve assessing a customer's needs and accommodating them by providing details relating to product specifications and promotional deals and directing them to different areas of the store where they can find certain merchandise. Garden associates are also responsible for maintaining the health of a store's plants and flowers, which includes preparing the soil, regularly watering plants and keeping the nursery clean.

Additionally, garden associates perform a variety of other duties, such as operating cash registers, stocking shelves, loading and unloading vehicles and operating pallet jacks. This can be a rewarding job if you're someone who enjoys talking with customers regularly and sharing your knowledge of flowers and plant life.

3. Florist

National average salary: $27.56 per hour

Primary duties: Florists are experts on flowers. They create a variety of floral arrangements such as wreaths and bouquets, for subsequent purchase or design. While a florist and a floral designer both provide customers with flowers, the difference between them is that a florist often organises and sells cut flowers while a designer is more concerned with creating flower decorations for events. Florists often work in retail businesses and flower shops, and although they typically work regular business hours, they may work longer hours in the holiday seasons, such as Valentine's Day and Christmas, when the demand for flowers increases.

Other key responsibilities of a florist include keeping an organised inventory, which may involve ensuring certain items are in stock, such as exotic and artificial flowers and decorative accessories. Inventory management can also require you to stay up to date with seasonal trends to determine what stock the business needs. For example, you might discover that peonies are a popular and high-selling flower in summer, so you order a sufficient quantity of these leading into the summer months. Florists are also responsible for arranging customer orders, watering and growing flowers and ordering large supplies of flowers from wholesalers and vendors.

Related: What Does a Florist Do? (With Salary and Career Path)

4. Gardener

National average salary: $28.79 per hour

Primary duties: A gardener plants and maintains the flowers in an outdoor or greenhouse space. They can work with public organisations, ensuring the upkeep of gardens or in a residential setting where they may help take care of customers' floral needs. Gardeners can also provide their services for one-time projects, which may involve using floral products to help homeowners improve their landscaping. Some other key responsibilities a gardener may perform include planting flowers and bulbs, spreading topsoil over lawn areas and organising plants and materials with wholesalers on behalf of customers.

Related: What Is a Landscaper? (Plus How to Become One in 7 Steps)

5. Delivery driver

National average salary: $25.34 per hour

Primary duties: Floral delivery drivers typically work in either a commercial setting delivering wholesale floral products to floral departments or for a business delivering arrangements to customers. Some of the job's key duties involve inspecting floral arrangements or accessories for damages and reporting any defect issues to the florist before making the delivery. Getting signatures as proof of delivery can be another important responsibility, and delivery drivers might also be required to provide assistance to warehouse or florist shop employees by helping them unpack freight deliveries and organise stock in a storeroom.

6. Event planner

National average salary: $65,297 per year

Primary duties: Floral event planners assist clients in choosing floral arrangements when planning special events. For example, you might help clients with an upcoming wedding by organising a consultation with them to determine what wedding flowers they desire and how they wish to have them arranged at the event. This may involve offering ideas for centrepieces, including different types, styles and colours of blooms or explaining the symbolic meaning of certain flowers, such as the romantic significance of pairing garden roses in a particular way or the graceful symbolism of displaying tulips in bouquets.

7. Import manager

National average salary: $76,392 per year

Primary duties: An import manager in flowers and plants is involved in the purchasing and selling of wholesale flowers. They make connections with domestic businesses to schedule the delivery of international flowers or plants. This might include partnering with suppliers and ensuring the safe transportation of non-native flowers within a required time frame and at a reasonable price rate. The job may also involve making sure shipments comply with customs regulations, informing clients about tax and insurance details and observing international shipments.

Related: 5 Key Managerial Responsibilities

8. Farmer

National average salary: $63,299 per year

Primary duties: Floral farmers cultivate flowers on their land. The job can involve partnering with local retailers or shops and supplying them with flowers. Farmers may also set up their own stands to sell their floral products directly to customers. Some other job responsibilities may include maintaining optimal soil conditions for growing flowers, laying fertiliser, controlling pests and weeds and keeping records of seasonal farming activities and accounting processes. As a floral farmer, you might work independently on small farms or work with teams on large farms.

9. Manufacturing associate

National average salary: $26.69 per hour

Primary duties: A manufacturing associate creates and supplies the goods that go along with floral products, such as vases and greeting cards. In this role, you may work in a factory or a plant and be responsible for performing a variety of duties, including preparing and operating equipment, monitoring inventory, assembling parts, organising supplies with vendors and other tasks related to production. Manufacturing associates often work closely with floral management to ensure products meet specifications and to deliver production schedules on time.

10. Floral manager

National average salary: $97,563 per year

Primary duties: A floral manager oversees the daily operations of floral departments in retail environments. They're responsible for setting and meeting sales goals, which can involve determining the ideal amount of inventory to order, selecting appropriate vendors and maintaining strong relationships with them and training employees on how to handle flowers. Floral managers may also determine a store's floral designs and arrangements, set their prices, coordinate promotions and discounts and advertise a store's floral goods and services to the public.

11. Horticulturist

National average salary: $62,519 per year

Primary duties: A horticulturist is a specialist who breeds and genetically modifies plants and flowers. They use their scientific knowledge to create plants that produce flowers with unique colours, shapes and patterns and they're able to manipulate plants to increase their number of blooms and resist certain diseases. Some major duties of a horticulturist include conducting research on how plants grow under various conditions, operating farming equipment such as fertiliser sprays and tractors and consulting with farmers and creating crop schedules for them.

Related: What Does a Horticulturist Do? (Including Duties and Skills)

Salary figures reflect data listed on Indeed Salaries at time of writing. Salaries may vary depending on the hiring organisation and a candidate's experience, academic background and location.

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