Alpine Alstonville has implemented training for staff in all areas of its operation since the development of the nursery in 2004. This covers Tafe classes being conducted on site by Wollongbar Tafe from Certificate ll in Horticulture through to Certificate lV plus Frontline Management lV which was attended by the Managers & Supervisors.

Other short courses & workshops put on by NGIA or NGINA such as the Waterworks course, IPM, EcoHort, OHS to mention a few are also attended by staff to further their knowledge within the industry & to have a better understanding of their respective roles within the workplace.

Currently we have 8 staff members enrolled & actively participating in Certificate III in Horticulture which has had positive feedback from the students. These are some of the units which the class are doing.

  • Contribute to OHS processes
  • Control plants pests, diseases & disorders
  • Implement a plant nutrition program
  • Provide information on plants & their culture

Staff Profile:  Kane McNamara

Kane grew up in Lismore on the Far North Coast of NSW, not far from Alstonville, and joined Alpine Nurseries in April 2010. Prior to that he had been employed to work as a Colorbond roofer. This is a job which requires great balance and dexterity, whilst working in all weather conditions, and is thus a good preparation for the challenges of field work in a nursery.

Kane’s first role at Alpine Nurseries Alstonville was as an order picker where, under qualified supervision, he was trained to select the best quality stock for transfer to the nursery at Dural as well as general Sales orders. He also partook in the physical demands of helping to load the stock onto the Alpine semis and B Double, again using his balance and dexterity skills and agree ability to work in all weather conditions.

After a year Kane was given the role of Potting Supervisor and this entailed learning new mechanical and nursery skills as well the challenge of coordinating staff and selecting suitable potting stock. Kane is currently working in the front section of the nursery as part of a crew of 4, learning maintenance and operational skills and furthering his overall knowledge of the machinations of the nursery.

Kane has attained his ‘Chem Cert’ and just completed his first year of ‘Horticulture – Production Nursery Certificate 3’, saying that his new knowledge has been invaluable in developing a better understanding of horticultural practices as well as changing how he approaches his work. Kane admits that the commitment and study required for Certificate 3 has thus far been a challenge but feels great satisfaction when applying his newly learned skills to the Pest and Plant Management requirements of his section.

In his late 20’s and quite fit Kane plays indoor soccer (futsal) during the week and competes in a local golf comp when he can on Saturdays. The intensity of futsal, a fast, highly competitive game where there is an emphasis on creative thinking, improvisation, good ball skills and technique, combines favorably with the patience, concentration and consistency required to play golf well and to also develop a well rounded approach to sport, work and life in general. Kane is also a keen follower of Soccer, Cricket and NRL and an enthusiastic participant in the Alpine Alstonville footy tipping comp.

Kane is one of our quiet achievers at Alstonville, well liked by all, who enjoys working with a team that he says are great to get along with. Kane sees his work as both challenging and rewarding and we look forward to helping him achieve his future goals.