selling rooted plant cutings

jebsApril 25, 2009

I'm new to this and a'm trying to do some research prior to jumping in full force. I want to start mist propagating shrubs and trees but is there a market for the selling of these as liners and were can I find a list of prospective buyers. It would be nice to earn some extra money on the side if possible. But i don't want to spend the time and money if i can't sell them. Any advice would help thanks

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I would also like to know if any one has and inexpensive but practical mist propagation system with plans to help me get started

    Bookmark   April 25, 2009 at 11:33PM
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THIS MAY BE A STUPID question but how do you ship rooted tree or shrub cuttings (Liners) In pots or bare root? and where do you buy these containers thanks

    Bookmark   April 26, 2009 at 10:31AM
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brandon7 TN_zone(7)

Take a look through the tread below. The discussion is a little more broad than your question, but it should shed a lot of light on various aspects you'll need to consider.

Here is a link that might be useful: Thread About a Similar Topic in the Professional Gardener Forum

    Bookmark   April 27, 2009 at 4:40PM
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brandon7 TN_zone(7)

Here's another similar thread with more info.

Here is a link that might be useful: Another Thread from the Professional Gardener Forum

    Bookmark   April 27, 2009 at 4:42PM
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thanks these articles help i really just want start this out as a hobby then see were it goes i really need plans for a small mist system i have a hobby green house and want to use it to it's fullest.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2009 at 9:41PM
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A great book for anyone interested in entering any aspect of the horticulture business is "So You Want To Start a Nursery" by Tony Avent of Plant Delights Nursery in NC. It's in our public library - might be worth checking it out.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 3:28AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Sounds like you need to do a plain, old-fashioned marketing study. You'll need to find lists of wholesale nurseries within the range you wish to do business, first of all. I've attached one such list, but you may find that your NC Extension department will be a wealth of information.

It'll then be your job to contact these growers and find out what they need, what they sell the most of, and what they seem to run out of. You might also get them to think in terms of more unusual plants, though good luck with that.

Another 'list' you should investigate is one consisting of liner producers. Know what's out there and who your most likely competitors might be.

Naturally, you'll want to find out what these potential customers will expect to pay for liners.

Any liners that I've purchased via mail were shipped bareroot. One company dips the root systems into water absorbing gel, wraps them in bundles of 25 or 50 or so and packs them by the several hundred per box. Others wrap them in plain, moist newspaper.

Here is a link that might be useful: check this out

    Bookmark   May 4, 2009 at 10:41AM
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Do a search for free plants

    Bookmark   May 8, 2009 at 10:02PM
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greenelephant(Woodinville WA)

This is more about marketing than propagation. The market is flooded with propagators. You don't want to sell wholesale. You want to add the value to the plant yourself and sell it direct, getting that value back to yourself. I'd run a test on Ebay. As for shipping bareroot . . . whatever you ship must survive. I think you'd do well to grow cuttings in 4 inch pots or plugs, which gives a little growing medium to keep the plant alive. In Ebay the buyer agrees to pay shipping. So it's no loss to you if you box up a gallon pot full of dirt. You're passing the shipping cost to the buyer. Good luck.

    Bookmark   May 11, 2009 at 12:34AM
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Sherwood Botsford(3a)

I wish...

I've been looking for a supplier of liner stock in Canada (Importing is a *real* hassle.) for the following species:

Limber pine -- Alberta source.
Whitebark pine -- Alberta or interior BC source
Western White pine -- Interior source
Swiss stone pine
Concolor fir -- zone 3 source
Subalpine fir -- non-coastal source
Trembling aspen
Swedish aspen
French lilac
Late lilac.

Currently I'm paying about 50 cents each for conifer liners, in quantity 1000.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2009 at 5:31PM
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logrock(7b (NW of Atlanta))


This is a good time of year to experiment with every type of plant and technique you can get your hands on to develop some skills. I have this excellent timer controlling a solenoid valve which sends water to a simple arrangement of misting nozzles. Also check out the items and videos on that site to get an idea how to build your own.

Then after you have reliable success you can maybe sell your plants at local farmers markets. You'll have to have a big operation to compete with the commercial (factory type) nurseries so like others here have hinted at, maybe find a specialty product and market and sell them retail or on-line.

Also, find a supplier (preferably local) of soil and pots and "stuff" like maybe Griffins

Hope this helps,

    Bookmark   June 3, 2009 at 4:00PM
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logrock(7b (NW of Atlanta))

That MistKits link did not work but the timer I was referring to is "DIG 5006-IP" and it lets you control 6 valves independently as well as a master valve. It also has a daily timer (in case you don't want it turning on at night), and a rain sensor connection. Flexible programming, and worth it to read the manual. DIG 5006-IP It's not real expensive and will be a long time before I can outgrow it, (accidental pun).

    Bookmark   June 4, 2009 at 8:07AM
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webgator(9 FL)

I personnlay use the tube trays from Stuewe & Sons for both propagation and growing plants from seeds. They work great, especially when it comes time to ship as you disturb the root system very little due to the fact they come out in "plugs".

As for selling, eBay is definitely a market, however, everyone on there expects super bargains, and with the fee structure it can really lower your profit margin. I've talked to a few local nurseries as well that are interested in buying some of my plants, so you may look into that avenue as well.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2009 at 3:08PM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance

I've ordered live plants before (NEVER from Ebay and only from reputable nursieries), and they come in a small plastic container in damp potting soil wrapped in damp newspaper and covered in plastic wrap and then carefully suspended in their cardboard box. They come DAMP!

If I was you, I would specialize in a certain thing, start your own patented varieties, and propagate those. Then I'd join a garden society, win some best of show prize, and get top price for my babies!!

    Bookmark   June 16, 2009 at 9:56AM
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taxonomist(7b VA)

Propagation of copyrighted and/or patented plant material is a strong NO,NO. I suggest first determining the 'legal'
status of plants you are planning to propagate and sell!!!

    Bookmark   June 21, 2009 at 7:02PM
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logrock(7b (NW of Atlanta))

Valid point taxonomist, but reading twice I think desertdance was advising him to develop new patented varieties to specialize in, and build a good reputation with top quality plants that he can ask top dollar for.

Personally, I avoid patented varieties and prefer heirloom or freely available selections since if anything proves worthwile in my yard, the first thing I want to do is make more of them for gifts, trade or sale.


    Bookmark   June 29, 2009 at 9:32AM
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Usually you can sell rooted cuttings to wholesale nurseries.
Liners can sell to nurseries or individuals, BUT you need to have a Nursery License and an inspection from your state agriculture department.
Usually rooted cuttings and liners are shipped bare root, meaning no soil on the roots.
You can wrap the roots in newspaper and seal it off with saran wrap to hold the moisture and ship USPS using the flat rate boxes.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2009 at 12:06AM
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Can you sell extra plants at a yard sale without a license? I have a lot of sprouts of several plants.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2009 at 10:50PM
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brandon7 TN_zone(7)


It depends on the laws in your state. In most states you're required to have a license to sell plants in any type of venue. Some states may have some limitations (based on percentage of business, dollar amount, etc), but you really need to check the law where you live. Mostly, these laws are in place to protect buyers from diseased plants and pests and to decrease the spread of disease, pests, and invasives into the state. Some states are very strict even with small operations, some aren't. Since you don't list your state in your profile, I can't give you any more advice than that.

    Bookmark   August 10, 2009 at 3:35PM
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