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6 month Nursery-propagation internship, Friends of Jerusalem Botanical Gardens, Israel

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Interns at the JBG are fully integrated into the professional team of botanists and horticulturalists. They are regarded as members of staff; expected to work independently, taking on substantial responsibility while still being guided and taught. The level of responsibility offered to our interns means they are unlikely to be suitable for applicants who have less than two years' experience,  However, if you have less experience than this and can prove your suitability, we'd like to hear from you.

Nursery – Propagation track, 6 to 12 months

Endangered plants project

Overseeing the lifecycle of mainly annual species from seed to fruit and even through to distribution;

Work includes curation, propagation, re-potting and planting in designated rare-plants beds as well as seed collection.  Seeds are collected in the Gardens and on collection outings then logged and stored at the Gardens.

Each year, the propagated plant material is used within the JBG as well as distributed to other botanical gardens (in Israel and beyond), to plant-shelter gardens and in some cases returned to nature. As a part of this process the new intern will see the fruits of their predecessor's work and get a sense of the significance of their own role in the conservation cycle.

Bulb collection management

Located on a terrace outside the nursery, the bulbs are planted in containers, blooming from September to June. Interns will experience some of the most striking flower bulbs of Israel and its surroundings (inc. Black Iris, wild tulips, leafless squill, ancient wild cyclamens and many more)

Work includes irrigation, fertilisation, propagation as well as curation of the collection including work with the database.

Products of bulb propagation are distributed within the JBG and to other gardens.


Interns work directly under the nursery manager and will take part in general plant maintenance. This includes managing a group of the Gardens’ nursery volunteers. In this way interns are able to observe and participate in the reality of day-to-day management of a nursery.

Required skills: Meticulous attention to detail, responsible with high work ethic, team player with ability to work in a diverse team as well as independently, "Green Fingers".

Other components of the internship:

* Interns will be invited to learn from the staff at the JBG and share their own experience and interests in a more structured setting through monthly talks and tours during their stay.

* Opportunities to join research trips and visits to other gardens and growers in Israel.

* On a pilot basis, interns may be offered the option to get involved in the Garden’s educational activities to supplement the work on their areas.

* 2.5 hours of study time a week to work on a research project and/ or to fulfil commitments to the sponsors of the internship.


The internship is a two-way commitment between the intern and the Gardens.  While the hope and intention is that both sides are completely satisfied, potential interns must be aware that tasks are fixed according to the Gardens’ needs.  These are affected by many factors and may require the internship plan to change, as may the intern's demonstrated expertise and abilities.

Interns are expected to commit to the following:

1. Interns are given work which is essential to the Garden and they are expected to carry the work out demonstrating an appropriate sense of responsibility and commitment.

2. Commitments to the sponsors: Interns are expected to provide:

a. Once a fortnight a short (approx. 1x A4 page) botanical blog accompanied by at least 2 photos to be used by the UK Friends of JBG in its publications (which can be printed, online or social media); b. Every 3 months a longer report (approx. 2 A4 pages) on their internship, including their current work, what they learned, and any other activities including social aspects.

c. At the end of the internship and before leaving Israel, a final report, including photos, summarizing the full internship period which can be published by the UK Friends of JBG and a separate report for internal use detailing positive/negative aspects of the internship, with suggestions for any future improvements; d. An undertaking to give at least 2 illustrated talks to external audiences within the first 6 months of their return to raise awareness of the internship scheme and the work of the JBG

3. Primarily the objective of the internship is to allow less-experienced horticulturalists to gain hands-on experience in a garden operating in a different set of circumstances – from the climate to the culture. Interns are expected to keep an open mind to learn and experience all that they can from the work and from life in Jerusalem. We believe that such an internship can prove a significant addition to a CV, enriching it with experience in a botanical garden operating in conditions radically different in every way to those they may have encountered previously.

How to apply

You may download the application form from

Forms should be completed and returned electronically to stating for which internship you are applying.  You should also send a covering letter explaining why you are interested and suitable for the particular track for which you are applying.

Applications should be submitted by 31 May (if past this date, email to find out whether the internship has been awarded).  Interviews are usually held in June, usually via Skype or VOIP.  The scholarships/internships usually begin in September/October each year (depending on the timing of the Jewish High Holydays).

The Friends' Operations Manager will, whenever possible, acknowledge applications within 48 hours.  Please note that due to staff limitations, we can only correspond with those applicants who are called for interview.

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