Profit With Your Own Nursery Farm
In the springtime, your local garden center is packed with rows and rows of various varieties of trees, shrubs, and other plants, each ready for planting in a homeowner’s yard or garden area. Since those plants were certainly not on the lot during the fall and winter, you might ask, “Where did they come from?”
These plants do not always originate in the retailer’s dedicated garden. Many were grown by individuals in their backyard nursery farm, raising plants and trees in pots during their spare time. Usually only a small investment is needed to begin a nursery, therefore nearly anyone can be successful.
Growers often start small, realize the opportunity, and eventually expand into larger operations. Besides marketing to active nurseries, venues like garden shows, exhibitions, farmers markets, and mail order are excellent places to sell plants at a premium.
How to Set Up a Plant Nursery
The expense of starting a nursery to supply garden centers can be very small. A first step should be to talk with the managers of a few retailers to determine which types of plants are difficult to source and in highest demand. These can be groundcovers, trees, shrubs, or ornamentals. You will need to make sure that these plants are successfully grown in your location and climate.
Educate yourself on the care and tools required in order to grow seedlings, cuttings, and young plants into more mature and marketable plants. The more you learn, the greater your potential for success.
Also, make sure that your property is legally zoned to perform these activities.
Your Beginning Stock
Start by buying smaller plants at wholesale nurseries. These may be “plugs,” which were grown from seed in trays and transplanted into pots about 6” in diameter. Or, you may start with “whips,” trees that are about two years old, that need further growth to be marketable. These young trees also should be transferred to larger pots to support growth.
Making a Profit and Having Fun
Caring for and nurturing potted plants or trees can be profitable. One source, Profitable Plants, cites an example that a plant that cost $0.25 one year may sell for $5.00 the following year, a 2000% gross profit.
With flexible schedules and relatively low technology, anyone can do this. Besides earning extra income, raising nursery products is an enjoyable activity.