Discussion in 'Nurseries and Growers' started by backtobasicslawncare, Jun 7, 2007.

  1. backtobasicslawncare

    backtobasicslawncare LawnSite Member
    from TN
    Messages: 126

    i was thinking about start very small and cheap way of greenhouse im thinking about buying greenhouse from wal-mart. thinking about growing flowers and buying soil pots from dollar general or walmart.

    how did yall start out??

  2. Mike Leary

    Mike Leary LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 23,168

    When we had our nursery, I built one with sch 40 pvc pipe bent around a frame, fan on one end & door w/screen on the other end. Used pressure
    treated 2 X 6"s for bottoms w/ holes drilled for pipe...4' up built backing where the pipe bent. The backing supported the benches & 4 way pvc cross tees held everything on top. Used ag quality visquene & designed it to take
    factory-made shade cloth...Got carpentry skills & time? What's the price of the ready-made & how big?
  3. huh

    huh LawnSite Senior Member
    from Lubbock
    Messages: 251

    dude there is NOTHING at wal-mart that you want to purchase to try and use to make money....unless you have figured out a way to make cash standing in the return line

    what is it that you are looking to grow and that will better answer the need to get with a wholesaler like BWI

    to get soil and plastic....they will also have in-expensive hoop houses and poly and shade to cover them

    I would start with something that will over winter without much if any heat like ground covers first then move to something that takes more care like color ....again something that if it does not sell in 7-10 days after it is "ready" it will not just turn to crap....jasmine and vinca ect. will just get thicker......color turns to out of control crap

    it is late enough now you need to be thinking about what to get going for fall already

    probably in your area you do not even need poly right now you probably need shade.....some places just buy cheap poly every year and cut it off in the summer.....only a FEW TOP NOTCH PROPERLY ENGINEERED AND MAINTAINED greenhouses that I have been in were you slightly cooler in the summer than the outside air without why use the poly just pull shade when needed...poly just keeps the heat in

    unless you can sell direct to customers or use the materials on your own it is not worth while to fiddlefart with a small greenhouse...and even then it is a lot of work and I would only do it to get plants I can't find elsewhere or if I had a problem getting the quality I wanted

    if you are busy now I would think long and hard about may be better off buying plants at the same cost or cheaper than you produce them and sticking to what you already do

    energy, water, fertilizer, sprayers, chemicals, plastic, dirt, hoses, waterwands, licenses (plural for nursery and applicator), LABOR!......crap all adds up

    you need to find a nitch, find where to get liners, or plugs, or seed, find the timing of when to plant the liner/plug/seed to get a finished product 5-7 days BEFORE the season starts up and then move the goods before they are overgrown/trash/fungus/bugs

    I love greenhouse growing, but you need a REAL NITCH to make it in that world and you need to know how to cut labor and movement of plants/ and materials to a min....and you need to know how to save on energy cost as well

    look at BWI and check into a 4' high hoophouse about 20' feet long and always use treated materials for any structure....anything else will rot in 3 months in a greenhouse enviornment and it is HARD to repair things especially when full of plants...and really you don't repair it you rebuild it like you should have built it to start

    I had an old boss with cold frames 10' wide made of railroad ties with a 3' high pipe down the middle and PVC "hooped" over the early spring/late fall we could even put in a bullet heater and a cheap ass box fan and get away with that a few days....BUT PVC will break after sun exposure and rail ties are a pain in the ass to always step over...but hey it got us by for quite a while....but it was way more work....but he had me and the amigos so what did he care :rolleyes:

    tell me what you are looking to "find your nitch" in and I can give more info
  4. tony58

    tony58 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 82

    In middle Tennessee area:I've got a nursery buddy who has a greenhouse/hoophouse for sale.Its located in middle Tennessee.Its 20x60 ft,4 ft sides,70ft shade cloth,overhead sprinklers,24x96ft ground cloth and over 1000 containers mostly 1 and 3 gal.Will have to be disassembled.priced at $1400.00 I have no idea if thats a good price or not,as I don't use green/hoop houses.If anyone is interested e-mail me at and I will give you the contact information.
  5. huh

    huh LawnSite Senior Member
    from Lubbock
    Messages: 251

    I would say that is not a bad price at all especially with the other items in the deal

    I always think of a greenhouse in terms of a 30 X 100 because that is what I was always in and you can get those used for 4,000 - 5,000 if you get a good deal and you would probably get 2 fans and a half working heater or 2 as well....they used to say steel was cheap, just get some and bend it (like that is easy) but hell steel is not that cheap right now

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