This week our Assistant Superintendent Cameron Watt sat down with one of our newest Turfcare team members to help us introduce the face behind all the flowers at the Redwoods! Jean-Paul Raymond, JP for short, is the Redwoods’ horticulturist that joined us in early spring. He has a gardening and landscape background and came aboard for a new opportunity. If there is anything more you want to know, whether it’s horticulture or personal, you can find JP smiling away in one of our gardens doing a fantastic job keeping them beautiful!
CW: How did you become involved with Team Redwoods?
JP: I was trolling craigslist, looking for anything new or exciting. I was motivated for a new change for some time, something that could maybe help accommodate my personal life and goals a little better. I saw the ad for horticulturist and was intrigued, what an exciting and cool opportunity it could be working on a golf course! I applied and got the call for an interview. I thought about the possibility of new overwhelming responsibility, maybe I wasn’t really worthy (as he laughs). But then again as a career building bonus, I thought if anything, this could help improve my interview skills. I’m very excited to have been offered the position.
CW: Give me a brief background of your work history.
JP: When I was younger, I was a bike courier for the city of Vancouver. Every day in my shipping travels, I would see gardeners and landscapers working outside of the many buildings. They all took lots of pride in their work because of the beauty and creativity. The results were always awesome. I was curious and began asking them many questions. I was hooked and I just fell in love with it. That’s when I made the decision to get into gardening.
CW: What might your new colleagues be surprised to know about you?
JP: Nothing really (as he chuckles). I own a landscape company for which I do side jobs and projects. I’ve owned it for about five years. I am a proud father to twin boys.
*What JP wouldn’t say on record was his ex-BMX skills and success when he was younger, I saw the pictures, impressive!
CW: What do you enjoy most about Redwoods?
JP: The entire team here from every department is very friendly, I love the country feel and family atmosphere. The people that golf here is friendly, I love communicating with all of them about gardening. I also really enjoy the progression of my work, seeing the results happen. This whole place just has beautiful surroundings. I also really love the coffee (laughing).
CW: What motivates you?
JP: I’ve been gardening and maintaining landscapes professionally for 20 years. I get to be creative with colours, scents, structure, and balance. The results are always so beautiful and I love that—that’s what keeps me motivated.
CW: How would your friends or family describe you?
JP: I guess in a couple words, a quirky comedian (laughs).
*I didn’t find him funny ;)
CW: What do you enjoy doing when not at work?
JP: Spending time with my family. We have a trailer at Cultus lake and it’s the perfect place to spend time together having fun, sharing memories. We try to go there often.
CW: Is there anything I missed or anything that you would like to add?
JP: I’m really looking forward to becoming a better recreational golfer! (laughs)
Interview conducted by Cameron Watt, Assistant Superintendent at the Redwoods