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Key Findings from Audience Research Phases I and II

Overall, U.S. adults are familiar with the term horticulture, associating it with plant care and growth. Familiarity with horticulture appears to be related to demographic characteristics: age, household income, education and race/ethnicity. Caucasian Americans over the age of 35 with some college education and a household income of $50,000 or higher tend to be more familiar with horticulture than other segments of the population. Fifty-two percent of phone survey participants ages 18–34 were not familiar with the word "horticulture."

When phone survey participants were provided the definition of horticulture…

  • Those 35+ years of age are more likely to say the definition aligns a lot or somewhat (81%) with their understanding than those 18–34 (67%).
  • White respondents are more likely to say the definition aligns a lot or somewhat (82%) with their understanding than Hispanic respondents (68%).
  • U.S. adults with a college degree (84%) or some college education (80%) are more likely to say the definition aligns a lot or somewhat with their understanding than those with a high school education or less (70%).

While most Americans over the age of 35 are familiar with horticulture, there remains an opportunity to better position it as a viable career option. Americans know horticulture is important, but don’t understand how someone makes a viable, rewarding, self-supporting career out of it. Given the benefits associated with the industry—available jobs, science/technology, and working outdoors—communicating these attributes will help pique individuals’ interest in the field. Additional focus and education should be placed on younger adults and middle school and high school students.