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Garden Internship

Blogpost published on: Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

2015 garden interns

We offer two internship positions in our 43-year-old biointensive organic gardens. The gardens are a rich setting for experiential learning. Interns learn all aspects of gardening while working closely with OAEC’s Garden Manager Michelle Vesser. We are looking for those who really want to learn from working in Mother Garden and take their experience out into the world.

Internship Details

  • Both garden internships are 9 month positions – February 28 through November 17, 2017.
  • The work week is 25 hours. In return, interns are given a private place to live, use of all the facilities onsite, and free participation in the OAEC Permaculture Course on a space available basis.
  • OAEC garden interns work full days Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.
  • One of the ways interns participate in the life of the residential community is through contributing to the regular cooking and chore rotations. In contribution to the community dinner schedule, each community member and intern cooks dinner once every two weeks.

Typical tasks include:

Garden interns are involved in all aspects of gardening, including:

  • Propagation and greenhouse work
  • Bed preparation
  • Composting
  • Transplanting
  • Sowing
  • Watering
  • Weeding
  • Harvesting
  • Seed saving and processing
  • Plant Sale preparations


  • An excitement and desire to learn gardening.
  • A desire to learn through experiential hands-on gardening is essential.
  • Prior gardening experience is helpful but not necessary.
  • We are looking for motivated, self-starting people who can be comfortable occasionally working alone.
  • Physical stamina is a must. We work outside rain or shine!
  • You MUST attend at least one Garden Volunteer Day at OAEC to be considered for a garden internship. Garden Volunteer Day is every Wednesday (except on the Wednesdays before Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s) from 10 am to 5 pm, with a vegetarian lunch served at 12:30 pm. You need not stay all day. Please introduce yourself to the garden staff and let them know you are applying for an internship.


December 15 is the deadline to apply for both garden internships.

Complete the 2017-garden-internship-application form, and e-mail application material to Michelle Vesser  – (or mail to 15290 Coleman Valley Road, Occidental, CA 95465).

  • Include a cover letter and resume.
  • Include references with contact information.
  • A picture of yourself is requested, yet not required.

After initial selection of potential candidates, we require a 1½-hour working on-site interview. This interview will be scheduled in the month of January. Phone interviews are not possible.


OAEC does not discriminate against applicants because of race, color, national or ethnic origin, age, religion, disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, veteran status or any other characteristic protected under applicable federal or state law.