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Setting up a plant shop

Hello lovely people!

I am investigating starting up a plant shop and wondered if anyone could give me some guidance on plant passports? I have 2 options; 

1) Setting up a local shop (probably run from my garden) offering deliveries and collection (local only). 

2) Combining this with an online shop for internet orders, which I believe means I may need to register for passporting as this counts as 'distance contracts'. 

I am very new to this and would appreciate some advice. :)

Many thanks,

Aimee

Posts

  • AnniDAnniD Posts: 9,557
    edited June 2020
    Hello Aimee and welcome  :)
    Research is the most important thing.
    Personally l would start locally and see what the feedback is. If you live in an area where there are a lot of keen gardeners then you have an advantage straight away.
    With internet orders, you obviously have the extra costs of postage and packing to take into account. It's a very large sector -  a quick Google of UK online nurseries will show you that !
    Another thing is to take into account what grows well in your local area, and also maybe try to supply plants that are slightly more unusual as opposed to what your customers could buy in the big garden centre chains.
    Keep an eye out for anything labelled PBR (plant breeders rights), you don't want to get into trouble! 
    This might also be of help
    https://www.startupdonut.co.uk/start-up-business-ideas/types-of-business/how-to-start-up-a-plant-nursery
  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 20,099
    If possible, I would find yourself a niche market. A speciality.  That way, people get to know you as “the person who sells....”.

    Near here is a very good family owned general garden centre. Right over the road is an alpine plant nursery. They work hand in hand with no competition.

    The man who runs the alpine nursery is known far and wide for his plants. As you can see, he isn’t up to speed with online sales (none) or telephone sales (no phone) or any other modern convenience. Even his website is 7 years out of date. And yet he’s a success because he’s good at the few things he does.

    Here is a taste.

    http://www.alpineplantcentre.co.uk/master%20home.htm


    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • Thank you AnnieD and Pansyface for the advice :)

    I am wondering whether I will need to sign up for the plant passport scheme if I sell at markets? 

    There is so much info about plant passporting on the web, and it seems that legislation changed 6 months ago, so I could do with some guidance on this if anyone could advise?

    Thanks,

    Aimee 
  • Chris_NChris_N Posts: 29
    If it was me (retired from business now) I would aim to specialise and be the best that I could be, that will possibly mean you are the most expensive but if the stuff is good you will always have trade.

    I think generally there are three choices in business, be the cheapest, not always pleasant, or be the best and usually therefore the most expensive - the middle ground is the toughest arena to succeed in.
  • AnniDAnniD Posts: 9,557
    This is the latest l could find on plant passports (Dec 2019)
    https://www.nfuonline.com/cross-sector/science-and-technology/crop-protection/crop-protection/the-new-plant-health-regulation-what-does-it-mean-for-you/
    There is also info on the Gov.uk website. 
    It's a complicated business at first glance !
    The Horticultural Trades Association might be able to help 
    https://hta.org.uk/
  • FlyDragonFlyDragon Greater ManchesterPosts: 834
    Chris_N said:
    If it was me (retired from business now) I would aim to specialise and be the best that I could be, that will possibly mean you are the most expensive but if the stuff is good you will always have trade.

    I think generally there are three choices in business, be the cheapest, not always pleasant, or be the best and usually therefore the most expensive - the middle ground is the toughest arena to succeed in.
    I agree with this, specialise and work on becoming the best supplier for something specific and not easily available.  What are your favourite plants? 
  • I am a massive fan of ferns and love some of the rarer types, so maybe that's a good place to start! Fern-lady! 

    Thank you all for all of your help and advice :) 

    Also I found this incredibly useful article which unpicks plant passports https://rachel-the-gardener.blogspot.com/2020/01/if-you-sell-plants-you-need-to-know.html#comment-form

    Aimee

  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 31,571
    As @AnniD says, research is key. 

    You say you love ferns ,, a good place to start, but I'd check out other suppliers already in the market
    https://mailfernatix.co.uk/ is a very popular company. 

    Remember, even if you have a great passion for plants X or plants Y doesn't guarantee you'll find enough who share your passion to make a viable business. 

    If it's to be a hobby with a bit of money coming in on the side, that's one thing, but if it's for you to live on and to pay your bills every month, that might be another.

    Research, research, and more research. 
    Devon.
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