8412 Groundskeeper-Arborist


TITLE Groundskeeper-Arborist





MAJOR ADMINISTRATOR Superintendent of Grounds


The Groundskeeper/Arborist performs semi-skilled work in the maintenance, care, and modification of University grounds and landscapes which includes the operation of electrically-powered and gasoline-powered groundskeeping equipment and machines and the use of small hand and power tools or equipment in planting, cultivating, and trimming grounds and landscaping. The Groundskeeper/Arborist promotes good tree health and prevents deterioration by performing arboriculture work as directed (about 75% of work time) either alone, as a member of a team, or as a team leader. The Groundskeeper/Arborist also performs maintenance on groundskeeping equipment and tools, and makes minor repairs (within demonstrated capability) as directed and performs specialized arborist work.


Education: A high school diploma or the equivalent is required.

Experience: At least two years of experience in groundskeeping is required, where knowledge of the methods, materials and equipment used in planting, cultivating, and trimming a variety of types of trees, shrubs, ground cover, flowers and grasses has been gained; an Associate’s degree in horticulture or a related field may be substituted for the two years of experience required. Knowledge of the use and proper disposal of chemicals used in groundskeeping (horticulture, turf management, and floriculture) is preferred.

Skills: The ability to read the English language sufficiently to understand written work orders and instructions as well as directions for the proper mixture, use, and disposal/storage of cleaners solvents, chemicals, fertilizers and similar products used in groundskeeping is required. Skill in the proper operation and maintenance of grounds maintenance tools, equipment, and machinery is required. The ability to perform arboricultural work as prescribed in the certification is required. The ability to safely climb trees for arboricultural work is required. The ability to develop knowledge of, respect for, and skills to engage with those of other cultures or backgrounds is required. The ability to identify and eradicate disease or insect damage to plant and turf materials is preferred.

Certification: Certification by the International Society of Arboriculture as a Certified Arborist is required. Licensing by the State of Missouri as a Certified Public Operator, License Category 3, for Spraying Pesticides is required.

Effort: Requires the ability to lift and carry groundskeeping supplies and equipment weighing up to 50 pounds on a frequent basis and up to 100 pounds on an occasional basis, prolonged walking or standing, and frequent bending, stooping, kneeling, and reaching on a daily basis. Requires a full range of physical motion in order to operate manual, electrically-powered and/or gasoline-powered groundskeeping equipment and machines. Requires the ability to access facilities and areas which may only be accessible by climbing stairs or by climbing ladders to a height of 20 feet (e.g., for tree trimming). Requires the ability to operate lifts to a height of 65 feet above the ground. Must be able to move throughout assigned areas, as the work is performed primarily out-of-doors, year round. Must be able to climb trees for arboricultural work. Employees in this job classification (job title) are designated as essential employees and must report to work as scheduled when University offices are closed due to severe weather.

License: Must have a valid Missouri motor vehicle operator's license.

Other: The scope of the position requires exposure to and use of chemical compounds for application on trees, shrubs, ground cover, flowers, and grasses which may be hazardous and cause injury if specific instructions regarding their mixture, application, use and disposal/storage are not properly followed.


1. Performs tasks common to the care of grounds and landscapes by seeding, watering, mulching, fertilizing, and applying chemicals to outside plantings, lawns and turf, as well as inside flowers and cuttings used in transplanting; inspecting plant materials for insects, disease, physical and mechanical damage and identifying replacements; transplanting, pruning, trimming, and cultivating trees, shrubs, ground cover, and flowers; and storing and caring for bulbs and cuttings in the winter season.

2. Performs regular and directed grounds and landscape maintenance by mowing lawns with riding or push mowers; trimming and edging around trees, shrubs, ground cover, flowers, sidewalks and buildings; weeding, thinning and cleaning flower beds and other grounds by hand or utilizing proper tools and equipment; and setting up, adjusting, repairing, and cleaning irrigation systems.

3. Provides a record of grounds and landscape watering and chemical spraying by keeping daily logs of areas watered and duration of watering and the application of chemicals, including areas sprayed, amount and type of chemicals used, substances sprayed and reason, and the wind speed and direction at time of spraying.

4. Performs campus-wide general maintenance and repairs by installing, removing, repairing and maintaining landscape lighting, parking meters, signs, cables, chains, barricades, gates, bicycle racks, feeders, posts, fences, and rock walls; and repairing streets, parking lots, athletic fields, tennis courts, track and omni turf.

5. Removes unsightly trash and debris from public areas by regularly inspecting grounds, drains, manhole covers, etc., for debris; raking, sweeping and bagging leaves, debris, dirt and trash from streets, sidewalks, parking lots, tunnels, and transporting the trash to designated central collection points on a daily basis.

6. Reduces the likelihood for the spread of diseases and unsightly appearance of trash containers in public areas by emptying, cleaning and disinfecting trash and cigarette receptacles on a regular basis, and removing, repairing and installing trash and cigarette receptacles on University property on an as needed basis.

7. Promotes good tree health and prevents deterioration by performing arboriculture work (either alone, as a member of a team, or as a team leader) including assessing and reporting the health of specified trees, climbing trees using hydraulic lifts or ropes, performing technical maintenance such as cabling, bracing, cavity work, pruning, etc. using arborists tools such as power pruners, climbing ropes, saws, drills, etc., and removing specified trees within one's capability.

8. Assists in preventing accidents resulting from snow or ice covered walkways by removing mowing decks and installing snow removal equipment on riding mowers and tractors; operating snow blowers, tractors or mowers with blades and using shovels to remove snow and spread sand, chat and salt on snow- or ice-covered surfaces.

9. Prepares outdoor locations and athletic fields for use by painting and marking athletic fields, moving bleachers and seating, and erecting portable goals or other athletic equipment.

10. Applies chemicals used in groundskeeping (horticulture, turf management, and floriculture) properly and safely by wearing prescribed protective clothing, masks, and/or rubber gloves and boots, following either written or verbal directions for mixing chemical compounds according to specifications, applying the chemicals properly on grounds and landscapes designated for their use, and disposing of residual chemical products as directed or storing and labeling them for future use.

11. Ensures that grounds maintenance equipment is operational by performing routine and preventative maintenance and cleaning of tools, equipment and machines within reasonable capabilities.

12. Contributes to a work environment that encourages knowledge of, respect for, and development of skills to engage with those of other cultures or backgrounds.

13. Contributes to the overall success of the Grounds Department by performing all other related duties as assigned.


The Groundskeeper-Arborist is supervised by the Grounds Supervisor, generally does not exercise supervision of others, and trains groundskeepers, student workers, and/or temporary employees in tree care operations.