Nursery supplies...

inulaMarch 26, 2010

Hi Everyone - I was wondering if anyone could tell me of a really great place from which to order nursery supplies, especially pots - both plastic and natural fiber...I have been growing heirlooms of all shapes and sizes for years and now I am attempting to open an heirloom nursery...up to now I've just been purchasing containers at the local nurseries etc and from recycling used ones but now that I am increasing my productivity this would be both cost and time-prohibitive...

I will greatly appreciate any advice...!!


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eric_wa(San Juan, z8 WA)


Our local landscape material yard has a nursery pot exchange. The have bins full of assorted pots and trays.

Just an idea. I wouldn't give up so easly on the reuse and recycle.


    Bookmark   March 26, 2010 at 6:08PM
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I haven't found any that are cheap enough for me in my area. I know there are some, I'm just too cheap. Plus I was given 4-5 pickup loads of used pots when a greenhouse was going out of business. Probably next year, I'll have to break down and buy some.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2010 at 7:42PM
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Not knowing what area you are in does limit the answer a little - shipping is a killer so someplace you can go and pick up items usually works out to be the best overall price. We are lucky to have several suppliers fairly local to us (Central Illinois) that we can shop from and that have large selections. Hummert in St Louis runs trucks on a schedual up this way - if you have a large enough order (IIRC it's something like $300) and are a commercial account they will ship it free on the regular run. Does not help if your in a pinch and need something right away but for items you can predict needing it's a great service. I would look around and see what's in your area and talk with their customer reps - you may be able to find a company with a similar deal. If you have to drive to pick up items you may be able to network with others in your area and share the cost of the trip. We make a trip to southern Michigan late in the summer to pick up jugs for cider (you can not beleive what it costs to ship empty jugs) and usually will pick up items for others in exchange for some gas money. Good luck with your project.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2010 at 9:48PM
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thosedarnsqurls(Up-State NY 5)

I know this is not an immediate solution for you, but long term, you may want to try....

Offer your customers discounts or "Bonus" plants for returning their used pots to you. (I have done this for years, and barely have to BUY pots at all any more.)
It also is a great way to promote RETURN customers! (LoL)

Go to your local big package stores that kill more stuff than they sell and ask if you might lighten their garbage load by relieving them of their empty pots, whilst organizing/cleaning up their mess!

Stop in your local garden centers who ALWAYS have an abundance of stacks and stacks of used pots. They are usually happy to have the messy storage area cleaned up a bit by their removal!

    Bookmark   March 30, 2010 at 9:55AM
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jbjbuild(z5/6 IN)

When reusing pots how important is it to clean them. Do you just give them a quick wash with some diluted bleach water and rinse? Just wondering how much time and energy you guys spend on cleaning and if there are any tricks to doing it fast.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2010 at 12:41PM
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thosedarnsqurls(Up-State NY 5)


I find the easiest way is if you have a big tub-like vessel, (Old stock tank is perfect), and fill with dilute bleach/water solution. You can just dump a bunch of pots in and let em soak...then just rinse with a garden hose.

They don't have to look perfect. They're just going to get dirty again real quick like, anyway. But the main thing is to be sure you're not introducing disease or pests into your nursery.

Its REALLY not much trouble at all considering the pots are free, and new pots have gotten VERY expensive.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2010 at 1:11PM
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jbjbuild(z5/6 IN)

Thanks thosedarnsqurls, thats pretty much how I was thinking of doing it, just wanted to make sure I wasn't wasting my time.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2010 at 1:15PM
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WH Milokowski is very good. We order from them all the time.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2010 at 1:19PM
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I don't even bother with the bleach water, I know I'm taking a chance, but my pots stay outside in below freezing temps during our winters and I've been lucky so far. Of course, I use new dirt each year.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2010 at 5:30PM
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Geez louise I am so sorry everyone for not checking back in...!!!! I was thinking that I would get emails alerting me if and when anyone responded to this post...I didn't get any and so finally I decided to stop crying into my corn flakes and just come and check the darn thing for myself...and voila..!!!! responses..!!! Thank you all so much...!!!! Now, here's the open an official nursery of one's own, I am hearing that there are now laws concerning the reuse of nursery pots....that they have to be purchased anew each time....does anyone else know about this? I am trying to open an organic nursery, too...I will investigate further and get back to you...Oh and by the way I am in Ojai, California...

    Bookmark   April 15, 2010 at 10:42AM
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Do a web search for McConkey company. They are the manufacturer that supplies many of the pots in my area. I bought a case of 880 four inch square pots for $51 from them, and a case of 1375 3.3 inch square deep pots for $64. Many of these online companies want 20 cents apiece for the same size pots that I got for 5.8 cents and 4.6 cents apiece.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2010 at 2:38AM
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