Hi! Not sure if you're the right person to ask, but... I really genuinely love working with plants. I have bad depression and anxiety problems, and focusing on caring for them really helps. It makes me feel useful. I'd love to get some kind of horticultural job but I don't have any accreditation or experience other than my own self-study. Are there jobs out there for someone like me?
there are a lot of cool plant jobs out there and honestly i need to make a masterpost of literally all the jobs i can possibly find but in the meantime:
jobs you can get with only a high school diploma/while working on your high school diploma: what I did was scour my area for any jobs remotely related to plants, which is how I came across my current corn pollinator job. there are openings in greenhouses and landscaping companies if you’re willing to do some manual labor, which is an important asset in our industry. don’t forget about your local government!!!! seriously. a lot of towns and cities run parks and recreation departments that need people to work. you should be prepared for manual labor, especially if you’re an able bodied young person. my current job is the heaviest in manual labor i’ve had so far, but feeling physically worn after a 9 hour work day makes me feel useful and deserving of the money I earned (I also have depression and anxiety, along with OCD and ADD; having physically demanding job helps use up some of my energy and helps me relax), but I also work closely with the breeders, who I can asks questions about the plants and stuff. theres definably room for moving up the ladder in some of these.
One tier up from that is jobs that require a two year degree. these are quality jobs, but are often kind of brushed under the rug as blue collar. one of the corn breeders i work with was hired after a two year agriculture degree at a local community college, and shes been working in the lab breeding new corn varieties for over 20 years now, and its her full time job. dont forget blue collar jobs when looking at botany things to go into. you can make a 200% respectable living working blue collar and have a job that might fit you better or be just as engaging or more engaging than a white collar job.
cool blue collar/two year degree jobs:
-greenhouse management (this is an actual thing you can major in!)
-forestry: you manage and protect forests, sometimes specific ones long term. Foresters diagnose problems with a forest ecosystem and help local officials and owners repair and protect the property and the things that inhabit it. (this might need a 4 year degree tho idk)
-Arborists. i love this. when youre an arborist, you are also known as a tree surgeon. people call in arborists to diagnose problems with their woody plants, and they drive out to people, diagnose their trees and shrubs, and use equipment to literally do tree surgery if needed. you can be a plant surgeon and thats so cool
-farming. this is one of those things where people are like ew a farmer but no. the median annual pay right now for farmers in the US is around $60,000 per year. farmers grow thousands of plants for food and make bank doing it depending on experience levels. its just a matter of learning how to run a farm and getting started. dont shit on farming jobs and dont put them out of your scope of potential careers bc its farming.
again this is not a comprehensive list by any stretch but theres a few things to think about???