Why the Horticulture Industry Has an Age Problem

Why the Horticulture Industry Has an Age Problem

young-professionalsA recent article in the Washington Post highlights an issue that is all too familiar to those in the horticulture industry: the aging of business owners, and the lack of young and, frankly, interested potential employees from the next generation.

“There’s an age gap in commercial horticulture, a drastic and obvious lack of people under the age of 40,” says Cole Mangum, Vice President of Production at Bell Nursery in Burtonsville, MD, in the article. “Our largest concern is in finding that next generation of greenhouse growers.”


Fortunately, the story paints a somewhat positive outlook of the future. Among those cited who express optimism is Angus Murphy, Chair of the Department of Plant Science and Landscape Architecture at the University of Maryland at College Park. Murphy noted that one of the selling points the horticulture industry can offer is a chance to work directly on environmental and social issues, including the effects of climate change and extreme weather and the lack of access to fresh food in poor city neighborhoods.

The Washington Post story also emphasized the efforts made by groups like Seed Your Future to reach out to folks at a very young age and encourage an interest in plants.

Read the complete Washington Post article here.