What is your name and occupation?
Ben: My name is Benjamin James Hayman and I am a horticulturist.
What does a Horticulturist do?
Ben: We look after plant health; we do a lot of designing and choosing the right locations for plants to go. We choose a lot of textures and colours; it just depends on what the client would like. There is heaps of hedging, pruning, fertilising and pest control involved.
How did you become a horticulturist?
Ben: Straight out of high school, I started an apprenticeship as a mechanic, mainly because I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do. It was just at the local garage and I was there for six years. I heard one of my friends was studying horticulture and was working in gardens and I really liked the sound of that. I had always liked being in the garden as a kid. My boss was nice enough to let me start studying horticulture at TAFE and continue working as a mechanic until I found full-time work with a gardening company. I was doing that for about 6 months until I found work with a horticulture business. I finished my course in horticulture and landscape construction about two and a half years later.
What does a typical day for you look like?
Ben: That’s a tough question, it depends a lot on the season. It’s a lot of tidying in autumn. Beyond that it’s preparing for winter trimming, pruning, and feeding. Pest control is constant too. The work I do outside of Hoselink is for my business, The Garden Keeper. I have a team of five people and we look after six different properties.
What is your favourite part about your job?
Ben: I love the feel. It feels nice to be in a garden and I’m lucky enough to work in some beautiful gardens. There are definitely some stressful elements, but I enjoy what I do because I get to be outside. I want to say it’s relaxing… but that sounds like an undersell! Being outdoors for a living, I feel really fortunate.
How did you get involved working for Hoselink?
It was around the time that the liquid fertilisers came out. Hoselink got in touch with me, I tried the product and loved it so I shared it on my Instagram.
Interviewer: So, you were a bit of an influencer at first?
Ben: Yeah, kind of, even though I had only just recently started my Instagram a few months before that. I was inspired by the other horticulturist’s on Instagram, it’s a great community. Anyway, not long after that I heard Hoselink were looking for a horticulturist and we pretty much got to working together from there.
What do you like about Hoselink?
Ben: Firstly I like the people. The whole team are absolute superstars and super genuine. Everyone wants to help everyone, which is beautiful. The product itself is a quality product. I honestly would not work with a company if I didn’t like their product. I love that they are Australian owned and are striving for more every day.
You have three gorgeous kids: twin girls and a baby daughter, who’s your best assistant in the garden and who’s the troublemaker?
Ben: Haha! Well, at the moment Mila, one of the twins, is my best assistant and Evie, the other twin, is the troublemaker. Hallie, my youngest, is just a dream boat and a really good little kid.
What is the one gardening product you can’t live without (doesn’t have to be Hoselink)
I cannot live without secateurs. They are always on me and I use them every single day!
What are you currently bingeing on Netflix? Any recommendations?
Ben: I just finished watching ‘Schitt’s Creek’ on Netflix, I definitely recommend!
Where would we find you if you're not in the garden?
Ben: If I’m not in the garden and not chasing after my kids I am a huge, huge NBA fan! If I get a spare minute, I will be watching basketball or playing basketball myself. Even though it’s rare, I love catching up with my mates for a drink too.
What was the last meal you guys cooked using produce from the garden?
Ben: Last night we cooked some tacos and used fresh lettuce from the garden.
For people just starting to get into gardening, what’s the best advice you can give them?
Ben: Watch the Hoselink how-to videos. Haha! Not just that, but don’t be afraid of making mistakes. Plants are pretty forgiving! There is so much information out there and even the pros are still learning. Don’t hesitate to get out there and have a go.
If you’d like to see more of Ben, you can find him on Instagram @the_garden_keeper
Ben’s Instagram Recommendations: