How to Become a


The complete career guide to be a Groundskeeper: salary, job growth, employers, best schools, and education you may need to get started.

Why We Love It

  • $27,460
    Potential Avg. Salary
  • 6.1%
    Job Growth Rate
  • Growing Demand
    Job Outlook
  • Don't Take Work Home
    Career Attribute

A groundskeeper is in charge of taking care of a range of landscaping and grounds for continued maintenance via skilled and semi-skilled assignments.

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What is a Groundskeeper?


The duties of a groundskeeper are numerous and can include the following tasks:

  • Monitoring the health and quality of trees, hedges, flowers, buses and shrubs on the property, which involves pulling or spraying weeds, watering and pruning plants, creating pathways, preparing ornamental plant beds, etc.
  • Assessing and selecting the best applicable pest control treatments, application rates of fertilizers and other chemical treatments to landscaping or campus grounds.
  • Regularly operate and maintain various grounds equipment like chainsaws, lawn mowers, power washers and lifts to maintain the upkeep of the assigned property.
  • Provide valuable inputs regarding landscape plan development or design, such as what type of vegetation is appropriate or which plants need to be replaced.
  •  Keep track of the performance of existing irrigation systems like controllers, sprinklers, valves and laterals, to promote water conservation and replace damaged equipment when necessary.

Day In The Life

The job of a groundskeeper does not attract a lot of attention, but it is important for any landscape area to maintain a consistently clean and attractive appearance. In this role, you are required to perform physically intensive work such as raking fallen leaves, laying sod, watering plants, fertilizing soil, digging ditches and using sprinklers.

Sometimes, you are expected to maintain the look of a specific area, whether it is keeping the pool or fountains clean, clearing up trash or repairing sidewalks. Work has to be done throughout the year, so in addition to the usual workload, you may find yourself shovelling snow or sprinkling salt on bike paths or parking lots during colder seasons. It is essential to be comfortable using a wide range of equipment on the job from saws, snow blowers, weed whackers, shears to hedge clippers.

Work Schedule

In this type of position, you need to work a varying schedule since there are no fixed hours. You can be expected to work on holidays, weekends, late evenings and other extended hours depending on the business. It is not uncommon to be working in extreme temperatures in messy environments. If your role includes maintaining multiple grounds, travel between locations is necessary on a regular basis thus a driver’s license is required.

Growth Of The Job

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 6% growth for groundskeepers between the 2014-2024 decade, which is similar to the national average for other professions. The need for grounds and lawn management will increase in the years ahead due to more vacancies on corporate and academic campuses. Further, as the baby boomer population gets older, they will require specialized help taking care of and maintaining their own lawns and gardens, leading to good job prospects for experienced groundskeepers.

Many groundskeepers also explore other kinds of employment such as a forest or conservation worker or a ranch hand. Both careers would require a high school diploma and higher level positions will eventually require a bachelor’s degree.

Typical Employers

Groundskeepers can choose from a wide range of rural, urban or suburban vacancies in industrial and private properties. Anywhere that has a yard or extended grounds with lawns, gardens and trees will need a groundskeeper. This also includes athletic campus grounds, conservatories, gold courses, parks, gardens and gold courses.

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How To Become a Groundskeeper

You do not need to possess education qualifications beyond a high school diploma for a career in groundskeeping. Most positions provide you on the job training to master foundational skills in operating gardening equipment, planting and maintaining flowers, trees or other plants. Being knowledgeable in landscaping and horticulture will benefit you in the day to day work. Many professionals advance their understanding of the field by completing an associate’s degree or certificate program that covers subjects such as lawn care, landscape management, field maintenance, sales and sod production.

In case your role requires you to frequently work with chemical solutions, fungicides or pesticides, it is recommended that you earn a certification in using and disposing such products safely. As a groundskeeper, you may also be required to move materials to and from work sites and operate different equipment for grounds maintenance. This is why prospective employers will show greater preference to candidates that hold a valid driver’s license or have experience driving heavy vehicles like tractors or trucks with a clean driving record.

Groundskeeper Salary Data

We’ve provided you the following to learn more about this career. The salary and growth data on this page comes from recently published Bureau of Labor Statistics data while the recommendations and editorial content are based on our research.

National Anual Salary

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High Range


National Hourly Wage

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High Range


How do Groundskeeper salaries stack up to other jobs across the country? Based on the latest jobs data nationwide, Groundskeeper's can make an average annual salary of $27,460, or $13 per hour. This makes it an Above Average Salary. On the lower end, they can make $20,820 or $10 per hour, perhaps when just starting out or based on the state you live in.

Salary Rankings And Facts

  • #739 Nationally for All Careers

Highest Education Among Groundskeepers

  • 0.2%   Doctorate
  • 0.9%   Masters
  • 5.7%   Bachelors
  • 4.5%   Associates
  • 15.2%   College
  • 34.2%   High School
  • 39.2%   Less than High School

Job Growth Projections and Forecast

2014 Total Jobs


2024 Est. Jobs


Job Growth Rate


Est. New Jobs


How does Groundskeeper job growth stack up to other jobs across the country? By 2024, there will be a change of 71,800 jobs for a total of 1,239,600 people employed in the career nationwide. This is a 6.1% change in growth over the next ten years, giving the career a growth rate nationwide of Below Average.

Growth Rankings And Facts

  • #364 Nationally for All Careers

What Companies Employ The Most Groundskeepers

Industry Current Jobs New Jobs Needed % Increase
Landscaping services 464,300 32,700 33%
Self-employed workers 285,500 8,800 9%
Local government, excluding education and hospitals 80,500 4,500 5%

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