Head Grower / Production Manager

Cherrylake, Inc
Groveland, FL

HEAD GROWER / PRODUCTION MANAGER 


COMPANY OVERVIEW

Located in Groveland Florida, Cherrylake is one of the largest ornamental production and landscape companies in the Southeast.  The company is vertically integrated - producing trees, palms and shrubs on over 1,500 acres of farmland, and providing commercial landscape contracting and landscape maintenance services throughout the region.


Cherrylake is a subsidiary of IMG Enterprises, a 90 million dollar Florida agri-business with diversified operations in citrus, ornamental landscape, ecosystem restoration and real estate.  Ranked the 27th Largest Privately Owned Company in Central Florida (OBJ 2020), and one of Central Florida’s Best Places to Work (OBJ 2019), IMG Enterprises is committed to building sustainable and innovative businesses that contribute to the health and wellbeing of people, nature and society.  


Some of the company highlights are:

  • Stability and financial strength: IMG Enterprises diversification and professional management ensure stability, resilience and the capital resources for sustainable growth. 

  • Family ownership: Two generations of family ownership and leadership ensure the commitment of the company to its core values and founding principles. 

  • Purpose driven culture: We start with WHY. Our purpose guides our actions and shapes our culture. We promote personal development and career growth by encouraging work-life integration, continuous learning and improvement, and a supportive environment for taking risks, being creative and exploring each individuals’ potential. 

  • Entrepreneurial Spirit: Founded by entrepreneurs we are driven to innovate, continuously improve and find a better way.    

  • Sustainable connection with the environment: Our products and services come from the land and contribute back to our environment.


JOB SUMMARY 

This is a key position in the Horticulture and Production team of Cherrylake’s 1,200 acres ornamental farm, requiring strong scientific knowledge, strategic thinking, and collaborative leadership.  The Production Lead is responsible for the activities related to water management, plant health and maintenance of the full line of containerized trees and shrubs at Cherrylake. Position directly manages a team of 5 Team Leaders and 1 Plant Health Scout to ensure the farm meets the high quality standards Cherrylake is known for, while maintaining competitive costs and safety of the work environment. Through collaborative work, the Production Lead also plays an important role to bring new ag technologies to the farm and contribute to the company’s mission to promote sustainable growing methodologies.


KEY RESPONSIBILITIES & ACCOUNTABILITIES 

  • Responsible for all aspects of cultivation of containerized tree and shrub material of a 1200 acre farm located in Groveland Florida.

  • Develop an overall Plant Health program based on the latest chemistries and the specific needs of the current plant pallet (fertility, pesticide, fungicide, herbicide).

  • Assist plant health team leader in writing prescriptions based on scouting reports.

  • Ensure tree & shrub maintenance departments are following the schedules outlined in our Task on Time (TOT) database.  

  • Develop and monitor budgets for materials and labor of maintenance, water management and plant health departments.  Flex labor in accordance to work load, seasonality, and budgets.   

  • Monitor and troubleshoot the irrigation infrastructure system including electric motors, VFD, filters, and plumbing.  Coordinate and oversee any repairs from outside contractors.

  • Design, budget, and implement large irrigation expansions and projects.

  • Ensure compliance with Consumptive Use Permit (CUP) from SJRWMD. 

  • Improve efficiency and quality of plant material through innovations, technology, and lean practices. 

  • Design, implement, & track experiments related to all aspects of cultivation (soil, fertility, pruning regiment, etc..).

External Relationships: Vendors, suppliers,service providers, SJRWMD, IFAS, Universities, Researchers

Internal Relationships: Greenhouse Management, Shifting Management, Planning & Product Management, Sales, Accounting, HR, Central Inventory, Facilities


CRITICAL SUCCESS FACTORS

  • Excellent knowledge of pest and disease issues for ornamental plants as well as treatment options

  • Good understanding of lean production practices and methodologies

  • Proven experience in cultivation of agricultural crops preferably ornamental tree/shrubs. 

  • Excellent knowledge of plant fertility and plant physiology 

  • Proven ability to manage and motivate a large team 

  • Strong understanding of financial management and business practices related to budgeting, planning, and decision making.  

  • Ability collaborate on cross functional team and with outside stakeholders 

  • Strong analytical and data management skills.

  • Excellent organizational skills and attention to detail.


REQUIRED EDUCATION AND EXPERIENCE

  • Bachelor degree or higher in agriculture, horticulture or related fields

  • Pesticide Applicator License

  • 5+ years experience in horticulture

  • 5+ years management experience - leadership skills to coach, train and develop teams


WORK HOURS 

This is a full-time position. Days and hours of work are Monday through Friday, 40+ hours per week. Occasional evening and weekend work may be required as job duties demand.