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PRESERVATION HORTICULTURALIST

Essential Competencies

Introduction: A preservation horticulturist in a specialist in the science of horticulture with advanced training in the principles, theories, concepts, methods, and techniques of preserving historic plant material and prescribing preservation maintenance practices. Cultural landscape preservation focuses on preserving a landscape's physical attributes, biotic systems, and use when that use contributes to its historical significance.

Research, planning, and stewardship are the framework for the duties of a preservation horticulturist. Research defines the features, values, and associations that make plant material historically significant; planning identifies the issues and alternatives for long-term preservation; and stewardship involves activities such as condition assessment, maintenance, and training, and the preservation horticulturist is the lead professional for these activities.

Following is a list of the competencies and the knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) needed to perform in this particular discipline at the Entry, Developmental, and Full Performance levels. The competencies are in boldface print and are followed by a brief definition. The definitions are then followed by a list of the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed to be effective at each level. The competencies and KSAs of the previous level(s) are also required at the next higher level.

ENTRY LEVEL (GS-0437)

Description: An Entry Level preservation horticulturist possesses basic knowledge, skills, and abilities regarding the science and field application of landscape horticulture and related disciplines. Based on assignments that are narrowly focused and detailed, with close and regular supervision, those knowledge, skills, and abilities are strengthened and broadened. Ideally, Entry Level preservation horticulturists are professionally mentored and technically supervised by other preservation specialists and/or horticulturists at the Developmental or Full Performance Level. Training is geared toward orienting the preservation horticulturist to the agency's organization and mission, the cultural landscape preservation field, and adapting standard landscape horticulture techniques and procedures to the preservation of cultural landscape resources. Training would typically be achieved by specific developmental activities including formal instruction, on-the-job experiences, apprenticeships, special work assignments, and close mentoring.

I. Professional Discipline

Provides assistance with horticulture and preservation maintenance operations regarding cultural landscape management.

Basic knowledge of the theories, principles, practices, and techniques within the science and profession of horticulture and landscape management as they apply to the preservation of cultural landscapes.

Ability to apply practical horticultural and landscape maintenance knowledge to designed and planned assignments.

Ability to apply an understanding of horticulture and allied fields such as landscape architecture, plant pathology, entomology, soil science, archeology, and botany to assist with project reviews and provide technical assistance and information.

II. Preservation Law, Philosophy and Practice

Assists in applying preservation practice as it applies to significant biotic resources.

Familiarity with the concepts of origins, theories, principles, laws, practices, and techniques of historic preservation, particularly as they apply to the preservation of cultural landscapes.

Familiarity with federal cultural resource preservation legislation, policies, guidelines, and standards, particularly the Secretary of the Interior's Standards and Guidelines for Archeology and Historic Preservation, and NPS Management Policies and guidelines.

Familiarity with current laws, policies, guidelines, standards, and technical information necessary for assisting with project reviews and providing technical assistance and information regarding cultural landscape management.

Familiarity with related resource management disciplines, such as history, landscape architecture, archeology, and the natural sciences.

Familiarity with the principles related to Section 106 compliance as it applies to historic landscape preservation.

III. Research

Conducts and coordinates inventory and condition assessments of biotic character-defining features.

Familiarity with current inventory and condition assessment methodologies and techniques.

Ability to participate in field research projects and assist with conducting plant inventories, data analysis, and the preparation of technical reports.

Ability to assist with refining research procedures in order to develop innovative techniques and methods necessary to solve site-specific problems which support cultural landscape preservation maintenance.

IV. Treatment and Preservation Maintenance

Implements treatment and maintenance of biotic character-defining features.

Familiarity with the application of cultural and natural resource policies, standards, and guidelines for historic landscape treatment and maintenance which protects both cultural and natural resources.

Basic knowledge of horticulture and landscape construction procedures. Ability to implement protective measures and procedures which minimize site disturbance and protect historic an archeological resources during treatment projects and maintenance operations.

Ability to apply modified horticultural procedures, techniques, equipment, materials, and technology to protect and preserve cultural and natural landscape features.

Ability to implement landscape treatment and maintenance recommendations and projects.

Ability to implement landscape maintenance programs including site-specific preservation maintenance guidelines, calendars, and procedures.

Ability to assist with field inspections and the preparation of reports, plans, and cost estimates to support landscape preservation maintenance operations.

Ability to work effectively with park operations responsible for cultural landscape management in implementing maintenance operations.

Ability to assist with evaluating and mitigating the impact of park operations, visitor use, environmental conditions, site construction and alterations, and maintenance practices on cultural landscape resources.

V. Project and Program Management

Serves as project manager for a wide variety of work including research and development for new horticultural applications and techniques, maintenance technical assistance, and treatment projects.

A. Program Management

Ability to assist with coordinating cultural landscape program activities with other park operational programs, such as historic structures, integrated pest management, and maintenance management

Ability to assist with developing proposals, cooperative agreements, memoranda of understanding, etc., with appropriate organizations to carry out the objectives of the cultural landscape program.

B. Project Management

Ability to participate in interdisciplinary team work with professionals in allied fields such as planning, architecture, archeology, and the natural resource sciences and ability to serve as a team leader on a project.

Ability to assist with review of projects.

Ability to assist the Contracting Officer's Technical Representative in landscape preservation and maintenance contracts, services contracts, and construction contracts.

Ability to participate in the review of products produced by cooperators and contractors.

Familiarity with compliance laws, regulations, and procedures with ability to oversee and conduct compliance procedures.

VI. Writing and Communication

Communicates, interprets, and presents cultural landscape issues.

Ability to assist with preparing articles, presentation of programs, and development of other interpretive projects on horticultural and landscape preservation topics.

Ability to articulate landscape management issues verbally, graphically, and in writing.

Ability to use standard computer software programs and ability to select and develop software applications to improve written and graphic communication.

VII. Training

Assists with training related to preservation horticulture and cultural landscape maintenance.

Ability to provide assistance related to coordinating and delivering training program.s

Basic skill in assisting with providing training regarding the application of technical information related to cultural landscape maintenance and preservation horticulture techniques, procedures, objectives, and methods.

DEVELOPMENTAL LEVEL (GS-0437)

Description: Advancement from Entry to Developmental Level occurs when the preservation horticulturist demonstrates a sound understanding of the principles and practices related to cultural landscape preservation and possesses the knowledge, skills, and abilities identified at the Entry Level and assumes responsibilities related to the coordination of a landscape preservation maintenance program. The individual's assignments are broader in scope with a greater degree of complexity than those of the Entry Level. At the Developmental Level, the preservation horticulturist's knowledge, skills, and abilities in program and project planning, coordination, and implementation are strengthened. Individuals work more independently, while continuing to work under the supervision and guidance of a senior professional. The Developmental preservation horticulturist may technically supervise and mentor Entry Level professionals, while still being mentored by a Full Performance preservation horticulturist or preservation professional. Developmental preservation horticulturists may begin to specialize in the field and will begin to assume responsibility for project coordination and supervision. Training is geared toward project coordination and specialized topics related to cultural landscape preservation achieved by on-the-job experiences, mentoring, and formal course work.

I. Professional Discipline

Provides expertise in horticulture and preservation maintenance regarding cultural landscape management. Coordinates efforts to resolve conflicts and solve various problems.

Practical knowledge of the theories, principles, practices, and techniques within the science and profession of horticulture and landscape management as they apply to the preservation of cultural landscapes.

Ability to apply practical knowledge to such assignments as assisting with the design and planning of difficult, and occasionally unprecedented, projects.

Ability to apply the knowledge acquired through an accredited degree program in horticulture or a related field with an understanding of allied fields such as landscape architecture, plant pathology, entomology, soil science, archeology, and botany to participate with project reviews, assist with contract supervision, and provide technical assistance and information.

II. Preservation Law, Philosophy, and Practice

Participates in providing direction on historic preservation philosophy and practice as they apply to significant biotic resources.

Knowledge of the origins, theories, principles, laws, practices, and techniques of historic preservation, particularly as they apply to the preservation of cultural landscapes.

Knowledge of federal cultural resource preservation legislation, policies, guidelines, and standards, particularly the Secretary of the Interior's Standards and Guidelines for Archeology and Historic Preservation and NPS Management Policies and guidelines.

Ability to apply current policies, guidelines, standards, and technical information necessary in to assist with project reviews and provide technical assistance and information regarding cultural landscape management.

Ability to incorporate related resource management disciplines such as history, landscape architecture, archeology, and the natural sciences in project and program implementation.

Understanding of the principles related to Section 106 compliance as it applies to historic landscape preservation.

III. Research

Conducts and coordinates inventory and condition assessments of biotic character-defining features.

Knowledge of current inventory and condition assessment methodologies and techniques.

Ability to supervise and manage research and inventory, analyze data, and prepare reports.

Skill in designing and conducting a variety of practical experiments, monitoring results, analyzing data, and defining procedures in order to develop innovative techniques and methods necessary to solve site-specific problems in support of cultural landscape preservation maintenance.

Ability to prepare reports, plans, specifications, and cost estimates to support planning for cultural landscape preservation based on landscape assessments, cultural landscape reports, field investigations, and data analysis.

Ability to conduct and supervise cultural landscape research, inventory, documentation, and analysis and evaluation based on accepted methodologies and techniques and developing unprecedented methodologies as appropriate.

IV. Treatment and Preservation Maintenance

Coordinates and implements treatment and maintenance of biotic character-defining features.

Knowledge and ability in the application of cultural and natural resource policies, standards, and guidelines for historic landscape treatment and maintenance which protects both cultural and natural resources.

Knowledge of horticulture and landscape construction procedures. Ability in coordinating and incorporating protective measures and procedures which minimize site disturbance and protect historic and archeological resources during the implementation of treatment projects and maintenance operations.

Ability to modify, apply, and adapt horticultural procedures, techniques, equipment, materials, and technology to resolve various problems and protect and preserve cultural and natural landscape resources.

Ability to prescribe, coordinate, and implement landscape treatment and maintenance recommendations and projects including contract management.

Ability to modify and implement landscape maintenance programs including site-specific preservation maintenance guidelines, calendars, and procedures.

Ability to prepare and coordinate field inspections, reports, plans, specifications, and cost estimates to support landscape preservation maintenance operations.

Ability to work effectively with park operations responsible for cultural landscape management in developing treatment and maintenance solutions.

Ability to assist with evaluating and mitigating the impact of park operations, visitor use, environmental conditions, site construction and alterations, and maintenance practices on cultural landscape resources.

V. Project and Program Management

Serves as project manager for a wide variety of work including research and development for new horticultural applications and techniques, maintenance technical assistance, and treatment projects.

A. Program Management

Skill in conducting long-range planning and budget formulation based on a knowledge of the NPS budget process.

Ability to assist in the facilitation of ongoing strategic planning including developing and prioritizing program goals, objectives, and initiatives.

Ability to coordinate cultural landscape program activities with other park operational programs, such as historic structures, integrated pest management, and maintenance management.

Ability to act as a liaison for the cultural landscape program with other offices of the National Park Service, professional organizations, such as the American Association of Botanical Gardens and Arboreta, and the Alliance for Historic Landscape Preservation; academic institutions; and other private/public groups to share and obtain state-of-the-art information on cultural landscape preservation maintenance and professional practice.

Ability to develop proposals, cooperative agreements, memoranda of understanding, etc., with appropriate organizations to carry out the objectives of the cultural landscape program.

B. Project Management

Skill in interdisciplinary team work with professionals in allied fields such as planning, architecture, archeology, and the natural resource sciences and ability to serve as team leader on a project.

Ability to provide review of complex projects and clearly articulate agency positions and direction.

Ability to serve as the Contracting Officer's Technical Representative in landscape preservation and maintenance contracts, services contract, and construction contracts.

Skill in oversight and technical review of products produced by cooperators and contractors.

Knowledge of compliance laws, regulations, and procedures with ability to oversee and conduct compliance procedures.

VI. Writing and Communication

Communicates, interprets, and presents information on cultural landscape issues.

Ability to prepare articles, present programs, and develop other interpretive projects on horticultural and landscape preservation topics for professional conferences.

Ability to make presentations and prepare papers for professional conferences and journals.

Skill in using standard computer software programs and ability to select and develop software applications to improve written and graphic communication.

VII. Training

Delivers training related to preservation horticulture and cultural landscape maintenance.

Ability to coordinate and deliver training programs.

Skill in providing training regarding the application of technical information related to cultural landscape maintenance and preservation horticulture techniques, procedures, objectives, and methods.

Ability to assist as a technical advisor for intern and Entry Level preservation horticulturists, landscape preservation specialists, and preservation gardeners.

FULL PERFORMANCE LEVEL (GS-0437)

Description: Advancement from Developmental to Full Performance Level occurs when the preservation horticulturist demonstrates a solid understanding of the principles and practices related to cultural landscape preservation and possesses the knowledge, skills, and abilities to effectively develop, implement, and oversee a landscape preservation maintenance program. At the Full Performance Level, a preservation horticulturist has highly specialized landscape preservation knowledge, skills, and abilities and advanced program and project management capabilities. Individuals work independently, with minimal supervision, on assignments and program activities which are broad in scope and complex. The preservation horticulturist may supervise and mentor Entry and Developmental Level professionals and para-professionals in the disciplines of preservation horticulture, landscape management, preservation gardening, etc. A Full Performance preservation horticulturist continues to specialize in the field and may be responsible for cultural landscape program management and partnership development. Training is geared toward complex project and program management regarding cultural landscape preservation, and is typically achieved through formal course work.

I. Professional Discipline

Provides professional expertise in horticulture and preservation maintenance regarding cultural landscape management. Leads efforts to resolve conflicts and solve complex problems.

Comprehensive professional knowledge of the theories, principles, practices, and techniques within the science and profession of horticulture and landscape management as they apply to the preservation of cultural landscapes.

Skill in applying professional and practical knowledge to such assignments as design and planning of difficult and occasionally unprecedented projects.

Skill in applying the knowledge acquired through an accredited professional degree program in horticulture or a related field with knowledge of allied fields such as landscape architecture, plant pathology, entomology, soil science, archeology, and botany to formulate agency positions, conduct project reviews, supervise contracts, and provide technical assistance and information.

II. Preservation Law, Philosophy, and Practice

Provides professional direction on historic preservation law, philosophy, and practice as they apply to significant biotic resources.

Thorough knowledge of the origins, theories, principles, laws, practices, and techniques of historic preservation, particularly as they apply to the preservation of cultural landscapes.

Knowledge of federal cultural resource preservation legislation, policies, guidelines, and standards, particularly the Secretary of the Interior's Standards and Guidelines for Archeology and Historic Preservation and NPS Management Policies and guidelines.

Understanding of current laws, policies, guidelines, standards, and technical information necessary to conduct project reviews and providing technical assistance and information regarding cultural landscape management.

Skill in incorporating related resource management disciplines such as history, landscape architecture, archeology, and the natural sciences in project and program management to ensure their proper consideration in operational planning, treatment, and preservation maintenance.

Expertise in the preparation and application of Section 106 compliance as it applies to historic landscape preservation.

III. Research

Conducts, coordinates, and supervises complex research projects related to the inventory and condition assessment of biotic character-defining features.

Thorough knowledge of current inventory and condition assessment methodologies and techniques.

Ability to initiate, supervise, and manage research; conduct plant inventories, analyze data, and prepare technical reports.

Skill in designing, conducting, and supervising scientific and practical research, monitoring results, analyzing data, and refining procedures in order to develop innovative techniques and methods necessary to solve site-specific problems in support of cultural landscape preservation maintenance.

Skill in preparing and supervising the preparation of reports, plans, specifications, and cost estimates to support planning for cultural landscape preservation based on landscape assessments, cultural landscape reports, field investigations, and data analysis.

Skill in conducting and supervising cultural landscape research, inventory, documentation, analysis, and evaluation based on accepted methodologies and techniques and developing unprecedented methodologies as appropriate.

IV. Treatment and Preservation Maintenance

Prescribes and implements treatment and maintenance of biotic character-defining features.

Expertise in the application of cultural and natural resource policies, standards, and guidelines in prescribing treatment and maintenance in a manner which protects both cultural and natural resources.

Comprehensive knowledge of horticulture and landscape construction procedures. Skill in developing and incorporating protective measures and procedures which minimize site disturbance and protect historic and archeological resources during the implementation of treatment projects and maintenance operations.

Expertise to guide, develop, modify, apply, and adapt horticultural procedures, techniques, equipment, materials, and technology to resolve complex problems and issues to protect and preserve cultural and natural landscape resources.

Proficiency in prescribing, coordinating, executing, and managing treatment and maintenance recommendations and projects including contract management.

Expertise to guide, develop, and manage landscape maintenance programs including site specific preservation maintenance guidelines, calendars, and procedures.

Skill in guiding, preparing, and supervising field inspections, reports, plans, specifications, and cost estimates to support landscape preservation maintenance operations.

Proficient in working effectively with park operations responsible for cultural landscape management in developing treatment and maintenance solutions.

Expertise to evaluate and mitigate the impact of park operations, visitor use, environmental conditions, site construction and alterations, and maintenance practices on cultural landscape resources.

V. Program and Project Management

Serves as program manager for landscape preservation maintenance and/or project manager for a wide variety of work including research and development for new horticultural applications and techniques, maintenance technical assistance, and treatment projects.

A. Program Management

Skill in developing and prioritizing program goals, objectives, and initiatives.

Skill in conducting long-range planning and budget formulation based on a knowledge of the NPS budget process.

Ability to facilitate ongoing strategic planning including developing and prioritizing program goals, objectives, and initiatives.

Skill in coordinating cultural landscape program activities with other park operational programs such as historic structures, integrated pest management, and maintenance management.

Skill in acting as a liaison for the cultural landscape program with other offices of the NPS professional organizations such as the American Association of Botanical Gardens and Arboreta and the Alliance for

Historic Landscape Preservation; academic institutions; and other private and public groups to share and obtain state-of-the-art information on cultural landscape preservation maintenance and professional practice.

Skill in developing proposals, cooperative agreements, memoranda of understanding, etc., with appropriate organizations to carry out the objectives of the cultural landscape program.

B. Project Management

Skill in interdisciplinary team work with professionals in allied fields such as planning, architecture, archeology, and the natural resource sciences and ability to serve as team leader on a project.

Skill in providing expert review of complex projects and to clearly articulate agency positions and direction.

Skill in serving as the Contracting Officer's Technical Representative in landscape preservation and maintenance contracts, services contract, and construction contracts.

Skill in oversight and technical review of products produced by cooperators and contractors.

Working knowledge of compliance laws, regulations, and procedures with ability to oversee and conduct compliance procedures.

VI. Writing and Communication

Communicates, interprets, and presents critical horticultural and landscape preservation maintenance issues associated with cultural landscapes.

Ability to prepare articles, present programs, and develop other interpretive projects on horticultural and landscape preservation topics for professional conferences.

Skill in articulating complex landscape management issues verbally, graphically, and in writing.

Skill in delivering formal presentations and preparing papers regarding cultural landscape preservation maintenance for professional conferences and journals.

Skill in using standard computer software programs and ability to select and develop software applications to improve written and graphic communication.

VII. Training

Manages and delivers training related to preservation horticulture and cultural landscape maintenance.

Proficiency in initiating, managing, and delivering training programs.

Expertise in conducting training regarding the application of current standards and technical information related to cultural landscape maintenance and preservation horticulture techniques, procedures, objectives, and methods.

Fully capable to serves as a professional mentor and technical supervisor for intern and developing preservation horticulturists, landscape preservation specialists, and preservation gardeners.

National Park Service
Training and Development Division
Essential Competencies
preshort.htm

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