A worthwhile business venture?

Hi everyone,

I'm considering starting either a fruit, vegetable or flowers business (or all 3) using a piece of land (80m x 40m) available to me in the west of Ireland. I enjoy gardening but if I do this I would like to make a profit. Can anyone with experience tell me if I'd be wasting my time doing this with the given space, or would I do well to focus on a certain type of flower (e.g sunflowers, violas, etc)

Thoughts?
Thanks

Posts

  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 19,430
    Who are your future customers?  Passers-by, shops, a box scheme subscription?  That will determine what you can sell best along with the kind of soil you have and your local  climate.

    Someone I know here is growing edible flowers and unusual edible leaves (one tastes of Camembert) to sell to high end chefs but then you'd have research what they might like to cook with in your area and how to supply them as they'd need them freshly picked and delivered.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Gal2Gal2 Posts: 36
    Thank you for your reply Obelix, got me thinking! Lots of rain and very rich soil. I guess passers by and local shops. The edible flowers idea is interesting! Are you suggesting thst I contact restaurants to see if there are any needs which are not being met in terms of supplies?

    Also, if anyone else has been down this route I would love to hear from you!
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 19,430
    Well, the restaurants won't know you're there if you don't contact them.  Maybe do some research on edible flowers?  There's a very good book by Jekka Mc Vicar which I believe is out of print but may be available at the library or 2nd hand on Amazon or E-bay.   There are probably other books that can guide you.

    The Beechgrove Garden this year has featured a couple running a box scheme for organic veggies.   Have a look at the factsheets available on their website tosee if they give any ideas about what and how to grow and sell.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 58,635
    Whatever whatever you do you need to research your potential customers as well as your costs etc. Establish what there is a demand for in the area and what customers are prepared to pay. 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • raisingirlraisingirl East Devon, on the Edge of Exmoor.Posts: 3,771
    Locally grown cut flowers is 'thing' now and doesn't need vast amounts of space. As above - you'd need to know what sort of demand there might actually be locally and if anyone else is doing it already.

    I think one problem with any crops is that buyers will generally want a consistent supply, even in the middle of winter. Maybe not the same produce but a similar quantity and that can be tricky unless you can afford a pretty big polytunnel or greenhouse. I think the Beechgrove couple only run their box scheme for 6 or 8 months in the year, but I might have made that up.
    You've got to know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em
    Know when to walk away and know when to run
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 19,430
    They did but now they're learning how to use their polytunnel to best effect that may well extend.

    Research is key tho to establish deand and potential prices to evaluate potential profits, not to mention business regs, rates, taxes, insurance.....
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Julia1983Julia1983 ShropshirePosts: 108
    I'm a beginner gardener so can't really advise on the detail of what to grow but if you were thinking flowers it might be worth looking into supplying weddings?  I know when we were booking ours we really wanted a local supplier of locally grown flowers, preferably organic (so no air miles and more environmentally friendly) but we struggled to find anything. We were happy with wildflowers or whatever was in season. The wedding industry is huge (bigger than I thought before I started booking for one!) so there must be demand, probably greater in the summer months too. Good luck whatever you do. 
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