Shaun Kass

Skills

Skills

Certified Arborist

International Society of Arboriculture certified arborist since May 2009        

Portfolio

Work History

Work History
Mar 2009 - Nov 2011

Head Gardener

Martha Stewart, private estate

Maintained and managed multiple gardens, 3 greenhouses and 153 acres of Martha Stewart's full time estate and reported directly to Martha Stewart.  Managed two assistant gardeners and worked in concert with the property manager and head groundskeeper to effectively maintain the property.  The gardens under direct supervision of the Head Gardener included: a third acre vegetable garden, a cutting garden, a pinetum, multiple woodland gardens, formal parterre and herb gardens, tree and herbaceous peony gardens, a Japanese maple woodland, a small table grape vineyard, small and large fruit including brambles and strawberries and a 500' long English boxwood allee.  The position was also responsible for the care of a large and ever growing collection of woody trees and shrubs and the management and restoration of native woodlands.  The formal garden areas totaled approximately 20 acres of highly cultivated land.  The two Janco glass greenhouses with Envirostep control panels and Quonset style plastic covered hoop house provided growing and over wintering space for large, tropical foliage and succulent collections as well as housing large collections of heirloom begonias, ferns, orchids, cactus, succulents and tropical and subtropical fruit.  The head gardener also brought plants from the permanent greenhouse collection into the main house when needed for events and staged them throughout the house.  One greenhouse was dedicated entirely to organically growing vegetables directly in the ground year round and housed a permanent container grown citrus collection. The seeds for the outdoor vegetable garden and cutting garden were ordered and sowed during the winter under HID lights with the use of bottom heat as needed.The position oversaw the IPM and fertilization programs for all greenhouses including using a Dosatron fertilizer injector, a compost tea maker and overseeing the IPM and fertilization of the gardens, woody plants and turf in conjuction with an outside contractor. The position also provided support and consultation to Martha Stewart's two other residences in East Hampton, NY and Seal Harbor, Maine including traveling to and from the locations as directed by Martha Stewart.The position also provided support for the Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia group including the television show and the magazine working directly with the producers and editors for segments and stories shot on location directly involving the gardens, greenhouses and property and occasionally being a guest on the television show either in the gardens or in the studio in New York City.  

Feb 2008 - Feb 2009

Landscape Supervisor

Brickman Group, Ltd

Managed, coordinated and monitored the performance of a landscape maintenance crew consisting of five crew members reporting directly to a operations manager.  Worked closely with an account manager to ensure maintenance contracts were staying on schedule, being performed in a safe and efficient manner and met the client's needs.  Monitored the maintenance and care of all small equipment and the truck and trailer assigned to the crew. Managed the time sheet for the crew members, coordinated with fellow supervisors and their crews to efficiently finish projects, resolve conflicts when applicable, taught crew members the safe operation of small equipment and proper landscape maintenance techniques.  Lead by example by working hand in hand with crew members and providing positive feedback; encouraged teamwork in all aspects of everyday tasks and ensured that the Brickman culture was followed on a daily basis. Co-chaired the safety committee for the branch which monitored and distributed safety gear to the 11 crews in the branch and held safety talks during the weekly branch meetings.  Worked closely with the co-chair and the branch manager to appropriate funds from a budget to acquire the appropriate safety and small equipment. 

Sep 2002 - Dec 2008

Owner/Operator

Professional Gardening Services

A sole proprietorship , referral based business in the northwest Philadelphia area providing horticultural, arboricultural and gardening services to private homes.  It was a very small business at first that I began in order to work and pay my way through college that developed into a full time business after graduation from college.  I provided year round, time appropriate services including: perennial and annual bed maintenance and installation, shrub border maintenance and installation and small tree pruning and installation.  Additional services included horticultural consultation, working in concert with other horticultural professionals that could provide turf grass maintenance, large tree pruning and removal, integrated pest management (IPM) services and landscape designers to provide plans for projects.  The client base was sold to fellow graduates from Temple Ambler upon moving to Connecticut.

Sep 2002 - Aug 2006

Gardener

Nina Schneider Design, Inc

Installed and maintained woody, annual and perennial plants in new or existing gardens.  Had interpersonalcommunications with clients in efforts to make sure all services being provided met their needs and to discuss the prolonged care of their gardens.  Was the head gardener at a private 12 acre estate part time and over saw an assistant gardener and worked in concert with the estate and garden manager to make sure all projects were done in a timely fashion.  Coordinated with contractors to ensure that all trees and turf remained healthy.Performed weed and invasive plant control throughout to try to promote the re-establishment of native plants.  Monitored the deer and pest management program to cooperatively garden in conjunction with a healthy but managed wildlife population.  

May 1998 - Jan 2000

Gardener's Aide

Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania.

Reported directly to a section manager and helped to maintain the non public research areas of the arboretum which included trial plants and large collections of woody plants grown from seed from many regions in the world, particularly temperate Asia and eastern Europe.  Also supplemented help for special projects as needed within the public area of the arboretum.  Worked on a project partially funded by APHIS (Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service) of the USDA on the eradication of a federally listed noxious weed.  Also helped with the installation of a riparian buffer restoration project, through the River Keeper network, along a small stream running through the arboretum's flood plain.  Participated in many of the intern lecture and field trips including going to rare and endangered plant habitats throughout the Delaware valley to study the native flora. 

Education

Education
Sep 2002 - May 2005

Bachelors of Science

Temple University, Ambler

A curriculum based on the fundamentals, research and practical applications of horticulture with a main focus on environmental sustainability and native plants.  It is one of the oldest programs of its kind in the country with its roots as an agricultural school for women.  Participated in the installation of an award winning Philadelphia Flower Show exhibit.  Inducted into Phi Alpha Xi, the national honors society for horticulture.  

Mar 2000 - Mar 2002

Certificate in Professional Gardening

Longwood Gardens

A two year program drawing applicants nationwide and accepting 16 students.  Experienced hands on training in all aspects of horticulture including: arboriculture, floral design, IPM, nursery management, floriculture, greenhouse and conservatory management, herbaceous plants and vegetable production,woody plant identification and maintenance, turf maintenance, natural lands management, invasive plants and weed management.  Course work supplemented the hands on training but was also heavily involved in the culture, use, procurement, and propagation of hardy, tropical, sub-tropical and annual plants.  Visited private and publicgardens, nurseries, garden centers and natural areas in the Philadelphia area as well as parts of the eastern seaboard.  Attended the class trip to southern England to study the gardening practices, plants and design used in English gardens.  Graduated with honors and received a graduation award for excellent personal garden maintenance and design. Received a Certificate of Merit by attending after hours classes that were also attended to by the general public.

1996 - 1998

Diploma

Eastern Center for Arts and Technology

A vocational/technical school that was attended in junior and senior year in high school that was a hands on, half day program that focused on horticulture.  Was a member of VICA, Vocational Industrial Clubs or America and attended state conferences.  Graduated with honors from the program