Home Sown Gardens LLC Restorative care for your garden and soul ™

What’s It Really Like To Be An HSG Gardener?

We polled our team over the past few seasons to get their honest feedback on what it takes to succeed at HSG. Below you'll find their unedited thoughts and feedback. These are straight from the exit interviews of crew and lead gardeners over the past 3-4 seasons. If it seems like a lot, that's because it IS! Our people are the only reason we exist, the culture is made by our people, and we take culture fit seriously when a new gardener is joining our crew. 

Happy reading!

Necessary Skills and Traits of an HSG Gardener

 

Work Ethic and Attitude

  • Need to be open to learn. Don’t assume you know.
  • You need high standards and a high work ethic.
  • Have to be willing to show up. First show up. Then as your best self.
  • Need to be willing to work hard; put in the effort. No half assing.
  • Good enough is not ok, need to strive for excellence.
  • Always be looking for something to do. Move, move, move. Ask, ask. Ask. There is no standing and watching.
  • Need to be honest.
  • Have to problem solve on the spot.
  • Need to bring your best self with the right attitude.
  • We are professionals. We all do our best. You need to bring your best version of yourself every day. If you can’t do that 92% of the time, this isn’t the job for you. Go somewhere else.

 

Teamwork and Collaboration

  • You need to like working on a team. You need to think of the greater good.
  • Need to be reliable. It is a small company. Everyone counts. We all count on each other.
  • Lots of comradery. There is no bad mouthing or talking behind others’ backs.
  • You are in close proxemics with people. You will form intimate connections. Find things you like about people and hang on to them on the harder days.

Self-Motivation and Independence

  • Need intrinsic motivation.
  • Need self-awareness.
  • Be proactive in your positive.
  • Need to feel open to learn and be able to take direction.

Reliability and Commitment

  • Need to be reliable.
  • Attendance is crucial.

 

Problem Solving and Critical Thinking

  • Need to be able to problem solve on own.
  • Need critical thinking: Is how/what I am doing right now contributing to the whole, the greater good, and the overall efficiency of the day?
  • Need to think for yourself.
  • Need critical thinking.

Adaptability and Flexibility

  • Willingness to be flexible.
  • You need to be adaptable and have the ability to pivot.
  • Need to be flexible. How do you handle change?
  • Need to be flexible.

Resilience and Grit

  • You need GRIT.
  • You will need to dig deep. Grit is a must.
  • Your mind will usually quit before your body. You need the mental fortitude and grit to get through the hard days.
  • Need grit, tenacity, strong work ethic.
  • Need to be able to dig deep.
  • Need grit, to dig deep.

HSG’s Culture and Ethos

 

Positive and Inclusive Culture

  • Let go of expectations of what a blue-collar job is. Labor is hard, but we function within a culture that cares and thinks employee safety – emotional and physical – is necessary and important.
  • We have fun while working hard.
  • We will meet you if you meet us; it’s a 2-way street.
  • People are nice to work with – committed industry professionals.
  • People really care.
  • Everyone actually wants to be here and likes working here (or they don’t stay). No disgruntled-ness.
  • This is an above and beyond company.
  • Collaboration and trust are forefront.
  • The company is built around good hard-working, humble people.
  • It is only a good place to work if you make it a good place to work, and everyone else does too.
  • It’s weird to like all my co-workers.
  • Lots of comradery. There is no bad mouthing or talking behind others’ backs.
  • There is a sense of belonging to something bigger.
  • Gracious, kind people.
  • We slash female stereotypes.
  • We instill confidence and teach life skills.
  • Appreciation is felt.
  • Comradery is contagious.
  • Everyone who works here is great.
  • People work to be an authentic positive even when hard.
  • The people and the company are efficient, patient, and just amazing.
  • Everyone is respectful and honest and can be open.
  • There are a lot of strong women. Inside and out.
  • This is a dream job.
  • Most positive and supportive environment I’ve ever worked in.
  • Safe to share. Ok to be authentic.
  • Good vibes abound.
  • Everyone is cool with everyone.
  • Open, respectful environment.
  • Low drama.
  • Low to no judgment, rumor environment.
  • Environment is 10/10.
  • Authenticity is rewarded.

 

Supportive Environment

  • This is not like any other manual labor job. People care. There are rules abided by – OSHA, etc.
  • There is always support.
  • This is a great community of people who got each other's backs.
  • There is great support.
  • Everyone lifts each other up.
  • It’s ok and safe to care; we’re actually shown how to care.
  • There is hard stuff, but so much support.
  • Feels like family.

Learning and Growth

  • You will learn something every day.
  • Need to be open to critique. Ask a lot of questions.
  • Take all the advice you are given. People know what they are talking about.
  • Be curious. Ask questions. It’s always ok to ask.
  • Be patient in the learning process. You will evolve over time. You do not need to know everything right away.
  • You need to be invested in learning. If you aren’t, you won’t care and that’ll suck.
  • We instill confidence and teach life skills.

 

High Standards and Excellence

  • It is a well-oiled machine; organized, processes in place.
  • We get to build and create every day. We make things beautiful and better.
  • It is a hard job done with passion and professionalism. And integrity.
  • We are professionals. We all do our best.

Health and Safety

  • It is super safe.
  • You need to manage hydration in and out of work.
  • Mental health is taken seriously.
  • Safe to share. Ok to be authentic.
  • It is a safe environment.

Whatever the Weather…

 

Physical Demands

  • It is a physical challenge.
  • It is manual labor. This means work. This means sweating and sore muscles.
  • Physical duress in bad weather. Prepare physically and mentally.
  • Days are long.
  • If you are not physically fit, it will be awful. It also leads to a negative attitude.
  • Need to be ok with being sweaty.
  • Need to take care of your body and mind. Protein should be a big part of your diet. Sleep, water, and food are so important. Stretching is vital. Need to keep yourself in “fighting shape”.
  • The beginning is the most difficult, after that it is not as awful as you think it’s going to be forever.
  • You sleep well after working.
  • The pace is fast. This is not your backyard. It is not whimsical.
  • Complaining doesn’t help. Still has to get done.
  • Days can be long.

 

 

Weather Conditions

  • You work outside. You will be uncomfortable. You will get dirty.
  • Weather can suck. And you still have to work. Attitude is everything. Preparedness helps.
  • The right boots can make a difference.
  • Weather happens. There is sun and heat. There is cold and wind and rain.
  • Hot is hard. Cold is hard. The rest is amazing!

Preparation and Self-Care

  • Preparation is key and makes all the difference. Self-care is a must: food, stretching, sleep, etc.
  • Need to be prepared – clothing, food, attitude, hydration, etc. The right self-care is a game changer.
  • You have to take care of your body and mind. Protein should be a big part of your diet. Sleep, water, and food are so important. Stretching is vital. Need to keep yourself in “fighting shape”.

 

Motivation and Reward

  • There is both immediate and delayed gratification.
  • It is so great to see the results of good garden care.
  • It is so rewarding.

Attitude and Mindset

  • Need a realistic attitude and the ability to reframe.
  • Need to bring your best self with the right attitude.
  • Need to be proactive in your positive.
  • Be patient in the learning process. You will evolve over time. You do not need to know everything right away.
  • Need to know yourself.
  • Hard work.

Company Pride and Satisfaction

  • This job is so so so WOW.
  • Most positive and supportive environment I’ve ever worked in.
  • I always want to get up and go to work.