Research Specialist
Scotts Miracle-Gro

Apopka, Florida

Here at Scotts Miracle-Gro there is no such thing as a typical day. Our culture is constantly energized by new and exciting growth opportunities and at a rapid pace. Every Associate plays an important role in providing innovative solutions for today's gardeners and growers and contributing new ideas to improve operations. In our company you need grit, it is what we were founded on over 150 years ago and is what keeps us growing. Regardless of your level in the organization there is a platform for your voice to be heard and the ability to influence change. Family, community and hard working values are weaved into all that we do. Come grow with us, where we develop and nurture the next generation of leaders.


General Summary

The Research Specialist serves a critical role in executing diverse biological research tests conducted at Scotts Florida Research Station, as well as overall Station operation, safety and readiness. The Florida Station, located in Apopka FL, is our southern US regional station and therefore serves key markets important to our business. The Station enables cutting-edge biological research to develop new lawn & garden products across our many brands and businesses. The 25-acre station includes greenhouses, field research areas, specialized equipment and unique infrastructure. The Specialist will help successfully execute a wide variety of research tests following detailed experimental protocols to provide the data necessary to launch new products. The person will also have select independent responsibilities as assigned by the Manager depending on expertise and Station needs.

The Station Specialist will work closely with the Station Manager to ensure our extensive facilities, infrastructure and equipment are in research-ready, state-of-the-art condition. Outdoor field areas include extensive turfgrass blocks, weed blocks, research gardens, hard surface/patio test areas and shade blocks. The person will coordinate with internal and external resources to ensure proper operation of field irrigation systems, appropriate mowing practices, weed control and fertilization. The person will lead and/or assist with capital projects, maintain appropriate levels of supplies, follow Environmental Health & Safety principles, and seek innovative ways to improve our research capabilities and efficiency of operation.

Key Worked Performed

Specific Tasks Percent of Time

Coordinate and successfully execute diverse greenhouse and field research tests as assigned by the Station Manager, with minimal supervision. Proactively provide regular communication to principal investigators to ensure up-to-date progress, key observations and abilty to adapt as needed.


Ensure overall quality and function of the Station, including greenhouses, turf blocks, weed blocks, research gardens, hard surface test areas, buildings and equipment. Lead and/or assist with capital improvements.


Identify, lead and/or assist with capital project improvements, key tours and major events.


Actively promote, enact and enforce all environmental, health, safety and security policies.



A. Most difficult or most complex task or project performed by the jobholder:

Must understand biological research principles and requirements from a wide range of disciplines (horticulture, agronomy, entomology, plant pathology, breeding, etc.) to ensure successful execution of research tests in field and greenhouse conditions. Must have a thorough understanding of warm-season turfgrass maintenance, research gardens, greenhouse systems, etc. to maintain operations and troubleshoot as needed. Must effectively collaborate with internal and external stakeholders to provide state-of-the-art research facilities.

B. Approximate time necessary to complete this task or project from start to completion:

Depends upon project or deliverable, generally 2 to 18 months in duration.

Degree to which responsibilities require original thinking (provide examples of activities):

Moderate to High degree. Ability to organize and execute numerous research tests simulataneously with amazing attention to detail and proactive communication. Optimize use of finite research space to deliver projects, implementing new systems or equipment, identify opportunities to reduce costs.

Supervision Exercised

A.Number and titles of positions directly supervised:

Possibly an intern or seasonal person.

B. Number and titles of positions indirectly supervised:


Minimum Requirements


Minimum B.S. degree in a biological science discipline (Horticulture, Agronomy, Soil Science, Biology, etc.).

B. Experience:

Prefer candidates with at least one year of experience in conducting research in a biological field that involved protocols, data collection, tabulation, observations, recommendations, etc. Experience in a horticultural-related facility such as a commercial greenhouse, golf course, sports field, botanical garden or other horticultural-related facility is desirable.

C. Knowledge:

Working knowledge in the basic principles of conducting biological field research tests, general grounds maintenance and equipment, fertilizer and pesticide application, greenhouse operation and safe operating procedures.

D. Skills and Abilities:

  • Collaborative, customer-service behavior with good verbal and written communication skills.
  • Operate environmental control systems, forklifts, mowers, tractors, utility carts, sprayers, spreaders and other typical equipment used to maintain lawns, gardens and greenhouses
  • High attention to detail and work quality
  • Motivated to identify needs and address them promptly.
  • Ability to work independently, lift 50 lbs and work outdoors.

Our commitment to LiveTotal Health puts the wellness and safety of our associates and their families as the top priority. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, ensuring associate safety has been a primary focus for all of us at Scotts. With the continuing pandemic, we remain committed to doing everything we can to keep our associates healthy and safe. As such, we are requiring certain associates to get a COVID vaccine*. This safety measure will help protect our associates, our families and our communities. We recognize a medical or personal circumstance may prevent you from meeting this requirement and we have a process to address those concerns.

Not interested in this role? Stay up to date on future opportunities by joining our ScottsMiracle-Gro and Hawthorne Gardening talent networks.

Scotts is an EEO Employer, dedicated to a culturally diverse, drug free workplace.

EEO/AA Employer/Minority/Female/Disability/Veteran/Sexual Orientation/Gender Identity

Notification to Agencies:

Please note that the Scotts Miracle-Gro company does not accept unsolicited resumes from recruiters or employment agencies. In the absence of a signed Master Service Agreement, and specific approval to submit resumes to an approved requisition, the Scotts Miracle-Gro company will not consider or approve payment regarding recruiter fees or referral compensations.

*Except where prohibited by state or local law

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