3410 Apprentice Gardener

Recruitment #PEX-3410-092824



This recruitment will be used to fill Apprentice Gardener positions in San Francisco Recreation & Park Department and San Francisco Public Utilities Commission. 

APPLICATION FILING DEADLINE:   Friday, April 23, 2021, 5:00 PM

VERIFICATION DEADLINE:   Wednesday April 28, 2021, 5:00 PM


The Apprentice Gardener is a trainee classification which performs routine and basic duties to assist Gardeners in the care of athletic fields, squares, parks, playgrounds, stadiums, thoroughfares, medians and/or other landscaped areas. Under direct supervision, learns to perform care and maintenance of a variety of plants and landscaped areas, including planting, pruning and pest control; removes debris and litter; operates hand or power lawn mower; performs routine maintenance of tools and equipment; and performs related duties as required. Assigned duties increase in scope and difficulty as the Apprentice Gardener demonstrates skills in performing diverse duties that are learned through an on-the-job training rotation. Work is performed under direct supervision and is evaluated on the basis of progress in a structured work experience training program.

Demonstrated competence and successful completion of a minimum of 3,000 hours of the structured apprentice training program leads to meeting the minimum qualifications for the promotional class of 3417 Gardener. Failure to achieve demonstrated competence and acceptable work habits or the inability to complete the training program within two (2) years results in loss of employment in the 3410 class. The appointing officer may provide an extension of time to complete the training program, however, appointments to this class cannot exceed 3 years. 

Example of Important and Essential Duties:

1. Participates in a structured on-the-job and classroom training program and learns routine and basic manual labor tasks.

2. Waters lawns, planted areas and playfields, manually or by means of automatic sprinklers; uses hand or power mower to cut lawns; fertilizes lawns, shrubs and flower beds.

3. Performs routine and limited trimming and pruning of shrubs and hedges by use of hand or power shears; gathers and disposes of cuttings.

4. With close supervision, sprays herbicides; plants and transplants shrubs or small plants; traps or destroys rodents; assists in the renovation of lawns or play areas.

5. Removes debris and litter; sweeps and otherwise cleans play areas, paths or roadways; removes trash; assists in the loading of debris on truck.

6. Rakes and weeds lawns; weeds and cultivates planted areas; cleans restrooms or other auxiliary buildings in a playground or park.

7. Sharpens, cleans and otherwise maintains tools and equipment, and performs general maintenance duties.

8. Assists in responding to specific service requests generated by the public, department or other City agency.

9. Loads and unloads materials, supplies, and equipment on and off trucks in proper and safe manner.

10. Assists in making minor repairs and adjustments to landscape irrigation systems, mower equipment, and hoses.

11. Performs related duties and responsibilities as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications

1.   ***Meet admission and eligibility requirements for enrollment at City College of San Francisco as follows:

a.)  You must be eighteen (18) years old on or before the first day of instruction for the term which you are applying. or

b.)  You are a high school graduate; or

c.)  You are the equivalent of a high school graduate, i.e., you have passed GED or a state's high school proficiency examination;

d)  You completed a minimum of 120 high school credits and have submitted a permission/consent form.  Please visit the  High School Programs page for more information.

Please visit the link for City College of San Francisco's admission policy:  



 2.    Possession of a valid California (Class C) driver's license (Copy of a driver's license must be submitted with application)

***NOTE:  If selected for this program, participants must register with City College of San Francisco, and enrolled in OH 50 Introduction to Environmental Horticulture.  Please visit the City College of San Francisco website for registration information.   



The stated desirable qualifications may be used to identify job finalists at the end of the selection process when candidates are referred for hiring.  

§  Six (6) months (1,040 hours) of verifiable experience in the care and maintenance of landscaped general ground areas or as a journey level tradesperson in construction or industrial field;

§  A good driving record (An applicant will be considered a negligent driver and he/she may be disqualified if the driving record shows:  6 or more violation points in the last 12 months; 8 or more violation points in the last 24 months; or 10 or more violation points in the last 36 months.  The months will be calculated from the date the report was requested.)

§  Verifiable experience in a physically-demanding position (e.g., gardening assistant, laborer, etc.);

§  Ability to safely and correctly lift, drag and/or move with assistance large and/or heavy plants and equipment to truck bed level, and the ability to kneel, bend and squat for considerable periods of time. (The probationary period will be used to evaluate this qualification.);

§  New or continuing student status at City College of San Francisco.

WORKING CONDITIONS: The nature of the work may require exposure to inclement weather conditions and may require exposure to hazardous conditions and/or materials which may include feces and/or urine, used syringes, etc.  Some positions require safe driving of large trucks or vans.  Some positions may require riding mowers and driving small utility vehicles. Some positions may require heavy lifting up to 50 lbs. Some positions may require weekend or shift work.

How To Apply

Applications for City and County of San Francisco jobs are only accepted through an online process. Visit www.jobaps.com/sf to register an account (if you have not already done so) and begin the application process.

  • Select the desired job announcement (PEX-3410-092824)
  • Select "Apply" and read and acknowledge the information
  • Select either "I am a New User" if you have not previously registered, or "I have Registered Previously"
  • Follow instructions on the screen

In line with the Official Public Health Order to slow the spread of COVID-19, “shelter-in-place” has been issued for all San Francisco residents that is expected to be in effect until further notice. As a result, Department of Human Resources (DHR)’s office (located at 1 South Van Ness Avenue, 4th Floor, San Francisco, CA 94103) is currently closed to the general public. If you have any questions, please feel free to email the Human Resources Analyst listed on this announcement.

Applicants may be contacted by email about this announcement and, therefore, it is their responsibility to ensure that their registered email address is accurate and kept up-to-date. Also, applicants must ensure that email from CCSF is not blocked on their computer by a spam filter. To prevent blocking, applicants should set up their email to accept CCSF mail from the following addresses (@sfgov.org, @sfdpw.org, @sfport.com, @flysfo.com, @sfwater.org, @sfdph.org, @asianart.org, @sfmta.com, @sfpl.org, @dcyf.org, @first5sf.org).

Applicants will receive a confirmation email that their online application has been received in response to every announcement for which they file. Applicants should retain this confirmation email for their records. Failure to receive this email means that the online application was not submitted or received.

All work experience, education, training and other information substantiating how you meet the minimum qualifications must be included on your application by the filing deadline. Information submitted after the filing deadline will not be considered in determining whether you meet the minimum qualifications.

Applications completed improperly may be cause for ineligibility, disqualification or may lead to lower scores.

If you have any questions regarding this recruitment or application process, please contact the exam analyst, Lilli Ann Bobila by email at lilliann.bobila@sfgov.org.


All applicants MUST submit verification of qualifying experience and training by Wednesday, April 28, 2021. Interested individuals who have applied and submitted verification documents to previous 3410 Apprentice Gardener recruitments with San Francisco Recreation & Park Department and/or Public Utilities Commission must still submit the required verification to be considered. Failure to submit all required verification may result in the rejection of the application. 


1.  Verification of meeting eligibility and entrance criteria for enrollment in City College of San Francisco (i.e. copy of high school diploma, certificate of completion/GED, bachelor's degree, or college transcripts, etc.); AND

2.  Verification of valid California Class C Driver's License - Applicants must submit a legible copy of their driver's license with photograph clear and visible; AND


Applicants are required to submit an original Department of Motor Vehicles driving history record printout. The printout is available from any Department of Motor Vehicles office or online. The printout must be current, dated within one month of the date when requested. The printout must be complete and state the word “End” on the final page of the printout.  Due to the Covid 19, copies of online printouts will be accepted.  Applicants who do not submit the DMV printout will not be allowed to move forward in the selection process.



Scan and email to RPD_recruitment@sfgov.org. Subject:  3410 Verification (Photograph copies of document will NOT be accepted); OR

DO NOT USE U.S. Mail or hand delivery.  Due to the Covid-19, verification materials submitted by US mail or hand delivery will not be accepted.   

Note: Falsifying one’s education, training, or work experience or attempted deception on the application may result in disqualification for this and future job opportunities with the City and County of San Francisco.

Selection Procedures

Applicants will be screened for relevant qualifying experience. Additional screening mechanisms may be implemented in order to determine candidates’ qualifications. Only those candidates most qualified will be invited to the selection process. Applicants meeting the minimum qualifications are NOT guaranteed advancement to the selection process.

Applicants selected to advance in the selection process MUST be available to participate in a written, performance, and oral assessment administered tentatively during the week of May 26, 2021.  More specific information (final date/time) will be provided to individuals if invited to advance in this process.

Conviction History

As a selected candidate for a job, you will be fingerprinted, and your fingerprints will be sent to the California Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The resulting report of your conviction history (if any) will be used to determine whether the nature of your conviction (or arrest, in limited circumstances) conflicts with the specific duties and responsibilities of the job for which you are a selected candidate. If a conflict exists, you will be asked to present any evidence of rehabilitation that may mitigate the conflict, except when federal or state regulations bar employment in specific circumstances, such as:

  • Candidates for positions with the Unified School District and the Community College District may be disqualified from consideration should their conviction history not meet the standards established under the California Education Code.
  • Candidates for positions with the Recreation and Park Department may be disqualified from consideration should their conviction history not meet the standards established under California Public Resources Code 5164.

Having a conviction history does not automatically preclude you from a job with the City.

If you are a selected candidate, the hiring department will contact you to schedule a fingerprinting appointment.

Disaster Service Workers

All City and County of San Francisco employees are designated Disaster Service Workers through state and local law (California Government Code Section 3100-3109). Employment with the City requires the affirmation of a loyalty oath to this effect. Employees are required to complete all Disaster Service Worker-related training as assigned, and to return to work as ordered in the event of an emergency.


Drug Testing Requirement: Applicants for positions in this classification who are not currently employed by the City and County of San Francisco in a safety-sensitive position represented by Laborers International, Local 261, are required to pass pre-employment drug and alcohol testing. All employees in this classification may also be subject to drug and alcohol testing upon reasonable suspicion or after a work-related accident.

Physical Examination: Prior to appointment, candidates must successfully pass a medical examination to determine his/her ability to perform the essential functions of the job and/or the ability to meet the physical minimum requirements.

General Information concerning City and County of San Francisco Employment Policies and Procedures:
Important Employment Information for the City and County of San Francisco can be obtained at http://sfdhr.org/information-about-hiring-process or hard copy at 1 South Van Ness Avenue, 4th Floor.

Copies of Application Documents:
Applicants should keep copies of all documents submitted, as these will not be returned.

Applicants with disabilities who meet the minimum eligibility requirements for this job announcement can find information on requesting a reasonable ADA Accommodation at: 


Right to Work:

All persons entering the City and County of San Francisco workforce are required to provide verification of authorization to work in the United States.


Issued: 4/16/2021

Carol Isen

Human Resources Director
Department of Human Resources
Recruitment ID Number: 092824
REC/ LB/ 415.831.2731

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