Mitchell East

Willarra Gold, WA

HILA Employment Category: Horticulture Grower

A Horticulture Grower generally oversees the entire cropping process from ground preparation, irrigation, fertigation, seeding, through to picking of vegetable crops and other horticultural commodities. At Willarra Gold – a mixed-enterprise farm in Manjimup, Western Australia – Mitchell East grows passionfruit and avocadoes, while also producing silage and sheep. His responsibilities as a Horticulture Grower are quite diverse, and entail producing the passionfruit pulp product, agronomy, spraying, and taking care of marketing of the produce. He also oversees the harvest and processing and packing of the produce. In any one day, Mitchell could be spraying, fertilising, slashing, or in the packing shed preparing produce for distribution at fresh markets.

Core tasks

  • Planning and coordinating the production and marketing of crops, such as fruit and nuts, vegetables, turf and flowers, from soil preparation to harvest taking into account environmental and market factors.
  • Selecting and planting seeds, seedlings and bulbs, and grafting new varieties to root stocks.
  • Maintaining crop production by cultivating, de-budding and pruning, and maintaining optimal growing conditions.
  • Organising and conducting farming operations, such as collecting, storing, grading and packaging produce, and organising the sale, purchase and despatch of produce.
  • Directing and overseeing general farming activities such as fertilising and pest and weed control.
  • Maintaining farm buildings, fences, equipment and water supply systems.
  • Maintaining and evaluating records of farming activities, monitoring market activity, and planning crop preparation and production to meet contract requirements and market demand.
  • Managing business capital including budgeting, taxation, debt and loan management.
  • May select, train and supervise staff and contractors.
  • Develop climate risk management strategies.
  • Manage work health and safety processes.

Study pathways

  • Diploma of Horticulture – AHC50416
  • Advanced Diploma of Horticulture – AHC60216
  • Certificate III in Horticulture – AHC30716
  • Certificate III in Protected Horticulture AHC33719
  • Diploma of Applied Agronomy – AHC51920

Training Recommended

  • Agsafe training
  • Work safety training
  • Chemical certificate
  • Forklift licence