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State of Washington


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Abolished Date: 2015-08-14


Enforces State and Federal laws and regulations governing the handling, sale or shipment of bees, nursery stock, plants, bulbs, cut plant material, fruits and vegetables in an assigned geographic area. As a designated cooperator, certifies compliance with export regulations and foreign country phytosanitary requirements.

Typical Work

Inspects plant and bulb stock and cut plant material at nurseries, markets and florist shops to ensure freedom from pests and diseases and that such stock is not in a dead or dying condition; inspects for compliance with established grades and standards;

Performs quarantine inspections at receiving points of nursery stock, sod or cut plant material shipped from outside the state; notifies shipper of rejected or unlawful stock; supervises destruction of diseased stock with earth intact or releases stock for return to point of origin;

Performs regular inspections of licensed nurseries, greenhouses, markets and florist shops for established fees; performs third party inspections on a fee basis;

Participates in programs of identification, survey, inspection and control of plant diseases and insect pests;

Makes routine apiary inspections and special inspections required for out‑of‑state movement of bees and equipment; orders eradication of diseased bee colonies and burning of hives that cannot be made disease free; advises beekeepers of methods of eradicating bee diseases; Selects and inspects samples of fruits, vegetables, bulbs or nursery stocks at shipping points or in receiving markets; inspects for color, blemishes, shape, maturity and evidence of insect, disease or mechanical damage; checks type and tightness of pack; determines grades; condemns defective horticultural products;

May assist in port‑of‑entry and post‑entry plant inspections;

Answers questions from and otherwise advises and assists plant, flower and bulb growers, shippers and consignees;

Performs field and warehouse inspections of commodities entered in a Plant Certification Program, i.e., seed potatoes, mint, seed, strawberry plants, fruit tree, grape stock, asparagus, etc.;

Performs other work as required.

Knowledge and Abilities

Knowledge of:  insect detecting and control, bees, plants, bulbs, flowers and other nursery and greenhouse stock; their diseases and cures; growing methods and techniques, including sanitation; federal and state statutes, regulations and court decisions involving sale and shipment of plant materials; Washington fruit and vegetable products; inspection and grading techniques and regulations for fruits and vegetables.

Ability to: write and speak clearly, concisely, accurately and informatively; travel frequently and operate a motor vehicle; explain and apply state and federal regulations and policies that apply.

Legal Requirement(s)

There may be instances where individual positions must have additional licenses or certification. It is the employer’s responsibility to ensure the appropriate licenses/certifications are obtained for each position.

Desirable Qualifications

A Bachelor's degree in entomology, plant pathology, horticulture, botany, agronomy or closely allied field and one year experience in plant regulatory activities.


One year as a Plant Services Specialist 1.

Additional qualifying experience will substitute, year for year, for required education.

Note:  Designation as a cooperator by USDA-APHS under the Federal-State export certification program to issue federal phytosanitary certificates is required.

Class Specification History

New class: effective 1-13-84
Revised definition, minimum qualifications and title change (formerly Plant Services Inspector 2): 3-13-98
New class code: (formerly 45710) effective July 1, 2007

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