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Nursery-Propagation Internship 2019-2020, Friends of Jerusalem Botanical Garden, Jerusalem, Israel

Interns at the JBG are fully integrated into the professional team of botanists and horticulturalists. They become are regarded as full members of staff in that they are expected to work independently, taking on substantial responsibility while still being guided and taught.

Interns are integrated into our small and dedicated team in two roles, either this one, Nursery-Propagation or Curatorial:


1.  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;

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

o   Each year, the propagated plant material is used within the JBG as well as distributed to other botanical gardens (in Israel and beyond), to other 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 propagation and conservation cycle.

   Bulb collection management

Located in a terrace outside the nursery the bulbs are planted in buckets, 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)

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

o   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 the diverse task of general plant maintenance. This includes also 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".   With the imminent opening of the extended Tropical Conservatory, it would be helpful to have experience of working in hothouses.


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.

  The opportunity to join research trips and visits to other gardens and growers in Israel as they present themselves.

  There may be opportunities to also work on some curatorial department work as well.

  One half-day 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 week, to provide between 1-6 photographs via WhatsApp to the Friends’ Operations Manager, together with a sentence describing each picture.  These will 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. 2x A4 pages) on their internship, including what they have been working on, what they learned, 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 young 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 young horticulturalist's 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

Applicants should obtain an application form from  The form can be completed online and submitted electronically.  A covering letter explaining the applicant’s interest and suitability for the particular internship should also be sent.  Applications should be submitted by 30 May.

The Propagation track internship usually begins in September/October each year (depending on the timing of the Jewish High Holydays). 

Interviews are usually held in NW London in July or by phone, VOIP or Skype.  Interviews for the Curatorship track may also be held at other times of the year, depending on vacancies.

Before submitting their forms, applicants should check the website of the Israeli Embassy to ensure their eligibility for an A/2 student visa. 

Applicants must also be fit, in good physical and mental health and be able to carry out their duties. A medical may be required.

Closing date: 31/05/2019


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