A Career in Botany

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Plants in History

Plants form an integral part of the human history, especially since they are a source of food and oxygen and contribute massively to the aesthetic value of the natural environment. Their historical importance as a source of employment for the human populace and in the modern times cannot be overstated.

Botanical Studies

Botanical studies entail the study of all plants and involve all aspects of their life. Study of internal structures and processes in plant biology is typically identified as plant physiology. An example is a study of photosynthesis and the factors affecting it (Minorsky 1879). Plant physiology involves five major components. They include: i) study of the molecular and cellular biology of plants, ii) phytochemistry which studies the defense mechanisms, iii) plant cellular and tissue interactions, iv) plant morphology which involves study of the mechanisms of regulating internal functions, and v) research of how plants respond to varying environmental conditions in environmental physiology (Shabala 13). The taxonomy forms the second primary specialization of botany where plants are studied and grouped into various taxonomical units through multiple standards, processes, and procedures. The ecology entails the study of how plants interact with other plants and the general environment and how this affects their population.

Education and Career in Botany

All botanists require some level of training and education in the expertise in a way similar to all professions. The requirements for a career in the above mentioned specialty focuses on the completion of an undergraduate degree program in the field of plant science or any closely related field and majoring in botany ("Become a Botanist: Education and Career Roadmap"). Further specialization in Master’s and Doctoral level is desirable for advanced botanical research, and it furthers one's employment prospects in the industry. English, Chemistry, Mathematics, and Biology form the core subjects for which anyone must demonstrate proficiency in before gaining admission as a trainee in the field.

Attributes of a Successful Botanist

All professions require distinct personal and professional attributes. Botany is no different, and as such, there are attributes required of an individual to succeed in the profession. First, a botanist must demonstrate a desire and enjoyment of outdoor plant research work. Secondly, one must be patient as research often involves long periods of study. A botanist should also be able to think logically and have demonstrably good verbal and written communication skills ("Become a Botanist: Education and Career Roadmap"). One should also have good analytical skills coupled with excellent individual and teamwork abilities.

Working Conditions

Botanical studies involve both indoor and outdoor working conditions. Laboratories form the major component of the indoor working environment for a botanist where they spend most of their time studying specimens. Outdoor botanical researches often involve samples and specimen collection activities in both land and marine environments.

Salary and Job Opportunities

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) provides a mean estimate for the salary of a botanist as $33.31 hourly and $69,290 annual for a botanist in the United States of America (United States Department of Labor). Higher learning institutions, scientific research, and technical consulting services are the most significant employers of botanists (United States Department of Labor). With increased specialization in botany, there is a projected demand in specialties such as bio-physicists, soil plants scientists, biotechnicians, and environmental scientists.


The importance of plants to the human race creates a need for botanical studies to better understand plants, especially with the current environmental problems. Coupled with my fondness for plants, preference of outdoor work, strong analytical skills, and teamwork skills, this aspect makes me a good fit for the occupation.

Works Cited

Become a Botanist: Education and Career Roadmap. N.d. https://study.com/articles/Become_a_Botanist_Education_and_Career_Roadmap.html. Accessed 22 Mar. 2018.

Minorsky, Peter V. “On the Inside.” The Journal of Plant Physiology, vol. 176, no. 3, 2018, pp. 1879-1880.

Shabala, Sergey, ed. Plant Stress Physiology. Cabi, 2017.

United States Department of Labor. Occupational Employment and Wages, 2016. 2017. https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes191013.htm. Accessed 22 Mar. 2018.

August 09, 2023

Life Science

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