You can start an indoor plant nursery in your spare time, with just a small investment, and if you choose, expand it to a full-time business. Say goodbye to the 9 to 5 rat race and produce a solid income growing plants for profit. It’s a low-tech business. You don’t have to be a horticultural expert to do this. Just follow the simple steps in the guide and you’ll be set. You would be amazed at how many million dollar plant nurseries got their start with little more than a shovel and a wheelbarrow.
Step 1: Setting up your Plant Nursery Space
When people think of a plant nursery, the local garden center usually comes to mind. Fact is, most garden centers produce very few of the plants they sell. Instead, they purchase their plants from specialty nurseries, who actually grow the plants.
You’ll find specialty plant nurseries ranging in size from tiny backyard nurseries to giant regional wholesale nurseries, who might supply retailers in several states. That’s the beauty of the plant nursery business – there’s room for everyone – from “mom & pop” part-timers to corporate giants. And it might surprise you to find out just how many of the corporate giants got started as backyard growers with just a “shovel and a wheelbarrow”.
The secret to making good money with a backyard plant nursery is to specialize in plants that are in demand and can be container-grown to save space. A relatively new development in container growing – called the “pot-in-pot” system, allows growers to produce larger trees and shrubs without the back-breaking hand digging and high water consumption required by field growing. For smaller plants, container growing saves time, water and transplanting.
Step 2: Do Your Research
Research trendy plants you can raise and sell on the internet, or visit your library, before starting a nursery business from home.
Step 3: Create your first wholesale order
Put together a list of plants and use Plant Club Online ordering platform to place your order at wholesale prices. You will receive a confirmation of your order via email.
Step 4: Label All Your Plants
Use a Sharpie pen on a popsicle stick. Cheap convenience stores carry the packages of 100 to 150 for around a dollar. Yes, it can get tedious. Turn on some music or a baseball game on the radio. People will be bringing home your plants and may not be familiar with them. They will appreciate the convenience of being able to purchase a specimen and remember it the future.
Step 5: Be Passionate
Sell plants that you are passionate about and that fill a specific niche. Stearns grows a variety of flowering perennials. Pentas (red, pink and rose) are a favorite as well as Pink Jacobinia and Thryallis. People like both sun and shade plants. Stearns grows both nectar and host plants for butterflies. Since she also plants vegetable and flower seeds for her vegetable garden, she will occasionally sell any extra flower or vegetable plants like tomatoes, kale, collards, and marigolds.
Step 6: Advertise Freely
Kijiji, Craigslist and people who are plant lovers in your area can help keep people posted on current plant sales. This is an amazing word of mouth form of free advertising, as it is directed to the people who are truly interested.
Step 7: Hire Help
Hire friend’s teenagers or older children (nephews, granddaughters, and neighbors) for the bigger spring sale. They get to use their muscles and math skills and the shy ones will get to test their public speaking skills to some very sweet “plant people.”
Step 8: Enjoy
“Have a good time,” is Plant Club's final tip. You will find that plant people are wonderful all around. Do you have any other tips for starting a nursery business from home? Let us know in the comments section here: