Monday, February 28, 2011

Support your Habit, Sell some plants

This year I am taking this homesteading thing to another level. In another post I mentioned I had a seed addiction and it's only getting worst. So over the past few months I have been given some thoughts on how to supplement my passion for growing vegetables. I have decided to sell vegetable plants this spring. Although I will not become a millionaire selling vegetable plants I can offset some of the cost incurred by my sporadic need for seed. I have a sun room with southern exposure and it works great to start plants from seed. This year I have purchased several seed trays to start my seeds. 
Why does this make perfect sense? Many people love to grow vegetables especially where I am from. But many of these people don't have the means to start their plants earlier. Tomatoes have to be the most popular fruit to grow in the spring through summer. But in the summer in our region Tomatoes shut off because it's way to hot for them to have proper pollination, nevertheless, they pick back up towards the end of summer and produce all the way out to December. So if someone wants to plant tomatoes from seed in my area they will often wait until mid to late march to put seeds in the ground. Give or take 90 days to see the first fruits depending on the variety and that puts the plant right smack in the heat of summer. So here is where I come in. Germinate seeds from January, February time period and with the proper set up even earlier and raise strong plants that are ready to be transplanted in the spring with only a few weeks away from bearing the first set of flowers.

Pricing is a sticky subject, but as you peruse through catalogs and local markets you can get an idea for what the pricing should be like per plant. I am under the notion that people should not undercut the market by cutting the prices of plants drastically. The majority of Bonnie Plants sell for approx $4.00 at the local markets this year I will sell one plant for $4, two plants for $7 and three plants for $10.

Specializing in Heirlooms has drawn alot of interest in my plants this year and growing varieties from different parts of the world has seem to cause alot of interest as well. All in all this has gone viral and I could only wish that I can make a living from this. Who knows where this will go but as for now it's alot of fun.

 Advertising, plants is very easy by using craigslist. Also my local flea market has booths for $5-$25 that can be rented on the weekend. Well it certainly looks like I'm going to be that guy. Spending his weekends under a huge a umbrella with a Hawaiian shirt and sipping on some iced tea selling vegetable plants. I'll probably find something from American Eagle because whatever I do it has to be sexy, even if it involves selling vegetable plants:)


Sassychiken said...

This is a little OT to the posting but just wanted to say I've really learned a lot from you blog. Been working on my own journey towards self-sufficency.

I LOVED your planting spreadsheet idea!!!! The garden nerd in me flipped out! If I give your blog full credit for the idea, may I illustrate my own version of that spreadsheet on my blog so others might learn? Knowledge is power and I like sharing ideas :-)

ATW said...

Sassychiken-- Thanks for stopping by!! Please feel free to modify anything you see fit on this Blog. Three years ago I started this journey and I truly believe that if it weren't for the people and the experiances shared through blogging I would not have the knowledge I have today. Im still learning everyday and every year the "garden nerd" in me goes more viral. (It's funny, as I am writing this I am thinking of a way to add solar panels to my cottage and have it run to my main house.) Anyways as you may well know the community is very friendly and I look forward to reading and tracking your journeys to Self-Sufficiency:)

Sue said...

Just love that bright and sunny "plant" room you've got there.
I've been trying to figure out a way to get shelves on my DEEP windows and the setup you have is perfect!
Good luck with selling the plants. I've often thought of doing that myself, but once the garden season is gearing up, I get lost in all my projects. Keep us posted!

ATW said...

Sue- I came up with an easy way to add shelves to the windows. I think that would be a great post because many people can expand thier growing area that way.
Selling plants this season is a win win for me. I started growing early to get ready for the season. So I planted everything that I would like to grow and decided that hey if im going to plant for myself I can also plant a few for somebody else and "possibly" make a profit. Just yesterday my Zuccs started pushing out tiny flower bulbs. In a few days I will start to harden them outside. Pics to follow.......

Sassychiken said...

Thanks for the permission dude! If you want to check out my own little written ramblings, it's

Hey whatever became of the meat rabbits? The Hubs and I are thinking of doing that next year. I loved your idea of the hutches on the fence!!!

ATW said...

Sassy- No Problem!! As for the rabbits, last year I had some business to take care of for a couple of months and I asked my buddy to watch them for me until I got back. Well he ended up emailing me and telling me that his wife fell in love with the rabbits and wanted to know if would be ok to keep them indefinately.... WTH!! anyway we are good friends and I was busy and I said why not.I can always get back into it because I have the set up now and honestly for people who have private fences it is a great setup. Your just exisiting space and it doesnt take up any room. Just provide a brace from the main beams at or about a 45 degree angle and anchor them back into the brace with another piece of wood parrallel to the ground running back to the main beam. Figure out how many beams you want to support and then run a stabalizing piece in the front to to tie all the supports together and that will give you a nice sturdy structure to form your hutches. I know what I just said probably makes no sense at all but if you look at the pics on my rabbit journals you can get a general idea of what im talking about. Good Luck and if you have any questions please feel free to ask:)

Nicola said...

Hi, if you are still selling vegetables, then you might be interested in my new discussion forum. It is non-commercial free of charge and for those who want to sell some plants from their backyard. Please have a look:
Kind Regards,
Nicola Bludau