Plant Breeder / Plant Geneticist

Develop a hardier type of camelia with bigger, brighter blooms. Improve disease-resistance of ornamental and edible plants. Cultivate a new biofuel with sustainable goals in mind. If this sounds exciting, you may enjoy a career as a plant breeder or plant geneticist.


What Does Working as a Plant Breeder or Plant Geneticist Look Like?

plant geneticist, plant breeder

If you pursue this career, you will most likely do the following:

  • Perform research in the breeding, health, nutritional value, production, yield and management of horticultural  plants.
  • Plan research and communication of research results to agricultural clients.
  • Innovation of improved plants and plant patents.
  • Formulation and delivery of recommendations for optimal plant production and cultivation.
  • Educational efforts, both to clients and to the public or education audiences.

To build this career, you need to understand horticultural science basics and have good research, documentation and presentation skills.

Plant Breeder or Plant Geneticist Salary and Forecast

Those working in these positions earn a national median salary of $62,300 and a state median salary of $64,140 (as of 2016).

Plant Breeder Salary

Job opportunities in the industry are growing at a rate of 5-8%, with North Carolina leading the way with a job opportunity growth rate of 16.2%.

plant breeder job forecast plant geneticist

What Education is Required to Work as a Plant Breeder or Plant Geneticist?

Wondering how to become a plant breeder or plant geneticist? These positions require, at minimum, a bachelor’s degree. Approximately a third require a master’s degree, and close to 20% require a doctoral degree.

Plant Breeder Education Requirements

Plant Breeder or Plant Geneticist Job Opportunities

There are many different types of related plant breeder or plant geneticist jobs to choose from. The following are just a few of the common job titles graduates of horticultural science programs qualify for:

  • Plant Breeder
  • Plant Geneticist
  • Biotechnology Specialist

Explore plant breeding job opportunities.

Ready to Get Started?

Use your skills and knowledge to make beautiful plants grow. Jumpstart your career by applying to a horticultural science certificate or program today.

Apply Now