For anybody who likes being outside and working with plants, growing high-value trees for a living is a great side hustle or full-time business.
Trees are a valuable and renewable resource that may be grown in a modest garden. The best part is that, unlike flowers or vegetables, trees are a year-round production. You won’t make any money if the flowers or veggies you’ve produced don’t sell. However, trees just keep getting bigger, allowing you to sell the bigger trees for more profit the following year. That is one of the top reasons for growing trees, as their worth continues to increase.
Although planting trees can take up more space, you can still earn more money by choosing high-value trees to grow.
Growing trees for profit: Benefits & drawbacks
Before starting a tree-growing business, there are a few aspects that you need to take into account.
Benefits of tree farming
Compared to other plants like shrubs or vegetables, trees are significantly more resilient and long-lasting, and tree farming often exhibits less volatility.
Tree nurseries offer the potential for a number of different revenue streams. For instance, walnut trees provide valuable timber over decades in addition to annual revenue in the form of nuts.
It might be challenging to find time to invest in an outside business if you have a normal, 9–5 job. Thankfully, trees need little upkeep, especially once they’ve achieved a certain degree of maturity. The majority of the effort is done during the early development phases, however, growing trees during the rainy season can cut expenses and labor because watering is not necessary. Mature trees rarely need pest control measures and don’t need fertilizer.
One way to maximize your profits when starting a tree-growing business is by choosing the right planters to supply your trees in! Jay Scotts planters, designed to withstand harsh climates, will save your customers a lot of money and time once your products have been installed.
See why landscapers choose our fiberglass planters to display their plants!
Drawbacks of tree farming and supplying
Relatively big startup costs
Beginning costs for a tree nursery, orchard, or forest are high, and they demand extensive planning, knowledge, and experience. It will be costly and time-consuming depending on what kind of tree nurseries you wish to start and how much space you have.
Unless you are selling young trees seedlings, it’s unlikely you’ll start making money for several years. Three to ten years are needed for fruit and nut trees to produce fruit, while ten to fifty years are needed for lumber trees.
If you are selling indoor trees such as palm trees, the time to market is greatly reduced. Be sure to research the growth expectations of your trees before you start growing them!
Ways to make money growing trees
There are 4 typical ways to monetize your tree-growing business:
- Growing fruit trees to harvest their fruits or nuts- selling them directly or converting them into other goods.
- Growing trees to collect wood for building, furniture, craft projects, etc- either utilizing it to manufacture other things for sale or selling it directly.
- Growing seedlings of the trees that provide the mentioned yields and selling them to other homesteaders and landowners.
- Growing other landscape trees or bonsai for home gardens or businesses.
Still wondering who will buy your trees? Have a look at How Top Industry Professionals And Organizations Use Our Planters for more details!
Of course, it is important to bear in mind that some trees might provide more than one yield, and you could work on more than one of these categories over the long run.
However, it might be better to concentrate and make one of them the primary focus of production before going any further to ensure that your tree nursery can generate a steady income stream.
9 High-value trees to grow in your backyard
A tree farm can be the right future investment for you if you have a green thumb and aren’t scared to put money down and wait years for profits.
Here are 9 high-value trees to grow in your backyard, whether you want to sell the trees themselves or their produce!
1. Trees for shade
Landscapers and homeowners typically desire bigger, more mature trees because they will offer “immediate shade” in a year or two, and they are willing to pay significantly more for those trees.
With a strong root system that will enable quick growth once planted, the majority of instant shade trees are offered in ten to fifteen-gallon containers.
Red maple and American elm are two often used tree types providing shade.
2. Landscape trees
Ornamental trees are valued for their beauty. These trees are planted for their ornamental qualities rather than for their fruits, nuts, or timber.
Most of them have vibrantly colored foliage or flowers, or they have appealing forms.
These trees may be purchased for garden supply stores, landscaping businesses, or even for individual clients. Many ornamental trees are fairly challenging to cultivate and are in great demand, making them quite costly.
Some popular and profitable landscape trees (to sell in 10-15 gallon containers) include:
- American Elms
- Japanese Maples
- Red Maples
- Flowering dogwoods
- Palm trees
3. Japanese maples
Homeowners and landscapers are often looking to purchase these gorgeous Japanese maple trees. Given the need for both smaller trees for people on a budget and bigger “specimen” trees for those with wealth, it would be the ideal tree for a small specialized tree nursery.
Additionally, there are hundreds of identified cultivars available in red, green, and both broad leaf and cut leaf forms. Numerous Japanese maples may be planted for sale in even a tiny space because of their modest size, which makes them ideal trees for container planting.
The price of the Japanese Maple tree will differ depending on its size, where you sell it, and what type it is. The real value of a Japanese Maple tree will range from $25 for a one-gallon container to more than $1,000 for an eight-foot-tall tree.
If you are not sure how to choose planters for your Japanese maples, have a look at our Expert Guide To Help You Choose Your Next Planter.
4. Heritage fruit trees
There is a rising demand for backyard fruit trees that may produce a crop for homeowners looking to reduce food expenditures as well as for commercial trees for those considering opening a backyard fruit trees nursery on a small plot of land.
Heritage fruit trees, some of which date back to Thomas Jefferson’s time, are now again gaining popularity. Dwarf fruit tree varieties that may yield two or three times as much per acre as regular trees are available, and they can start producing fruit in just three or four years, thanks to the work of tree researchers.
The variety of profitable fruit trees is really astonishing! Apple trees, peach trees, pear, apricot, cherry, pear, nectarine, avocado, pomegranate, banana, or plum trees are just a few examples of the many stone fruit options available to you. Consider miniature citrus plants like orange, lime, lemon, or grapefruit trees if you reside in tropical and subtropical climates.
Dwarf fruit trees may be moved swiftly and take up little room when grown in five-gallon containers. Once they reach a suitable size, they will yield fruit for the farmstead that can be sold in the market.
5. Palm Trees
Indoors and outdoors, palm trees are pretty common ornamental trees.
While young trees have high water and fertilizer requirements and might be sensitive to transplant and environmental changes, as they age they stabilize and become more resilient. Warmer temperatures are better for these trees because they cannot tolerate the cold winters.
Check out our Practical Tips For Covering Plants In Winter.
The price of a palm tree will vary depending on the species, size, and location from whence it is purchased.
Typically, a 3-gallon palm tree can be sold from $15 to $45, and $50 to $70 for a 7-gallon. A four to six-foot palm tree may be priced between $145 and $325. Costs range from $250 to $575 for a tree that is around 10 feet in height. The price of larger trees that are at least 11 feet tall can range from $500 to more than $2,000.
Selling palm trees in small containers as houseplants is a brilliant idea. These enrich your client’s residence, apartment, or place of business with a touch of tropical charm.
In all of the U.S.’s warm-climate zones, large varieties for outdoor usage are crucial landscape elements. Direct sales to clients or wholesale sales to landscaping businesses are also options.
Related article: Palm Tree Landscaping Ideas: Indoor and outdoor Palm Paradise
6. Flowering dogwood
The dogwood, which has both gorgeous spring blossoms and vibrant fall foliage, is among the top 10 trees on every landscaper’s list.
The branches are frequently used by florists for arrangements due to the beautiful flowers, especially for major occasions like weddings or in public spaces like hotel lobbies.
The most popular dogwood tree kinds include Celestial Shadow, those with pink or red flowers, Red twig, White twig, White Koussa, Cloud 9, and Cherokee Chief. Because there are so many types to select from, the price is primarily determined by the variety purchased.
A three to five-foot tall Dogwood tree can be sold for between $50 and $150 on average. When it comes to the ones with red or pink blossoms, the prices might be slightly higher, ranging from $80 and $170 for a three to five-foot tall tree. White twigs and White Koussa trees range in price from $70 to $120.
7. Nut trees
Depending on the type and variety, mature nut trees are highly profitable for both their nuts and their wood.
They can be specialized for nuts or timber production depending on how they are grown and trimmed. Walnut trees, for instance, can be allowed to grow broad, which promotes nut production. In just over four years, they will produce tasty, lucrative nuts.
You may also force your trees to grow tall and straight, which results in high-value timber but fewer nuts. Walnut is a very expensive wood that is used for carvings, furnishings, flooring, cabinets, and gunstocks.
Walnuts, almonds, pistachio, macadamia, chestnut, and pine-nut are among the most popular nut trees to plant.
8. Bonsai trees
Small specialty trees called bonsai trees are used as ornaments. Bonsai trees are extremely expensive trees, particularly for their size, due to their history, beauty, and the skill needed to nurture and trim them.
You may manage a sizable bonsai business even in a modest backyard.
Contrary to popular belief, cultivating and maintaining bonsai trees is not a mysterious, holy skill. Anyone can learn to create these (with a little practice).
There are several bonsai kinds available. Some types may even be cultivated indoors or in warm climates, while others fare best in colder areas.
The cost of bonsai trees will greatly vary based on the species, how old they are, and where you want to sell them. A basic one-gallon pot tree can be sold for $5, while bonsai collectors might be down to buy a 15-year-old bonsai for as much as $1,250. A bonsai aged from 5 to 10 is typically worth between $250 and $400. The price should be $500 or more if they are older than this.
Looking for large planters for your bonsai tree? check out our Guide To Large Outdoor Planters: Home and Commercial Container Ideas.
9. Christmas trees
A new Christmas tree is everyone’s favorite. There is nothing that compares to the authentic appearance, feel, and scent.
Christmas tree farming is quite a huge business and this one needs a little more space. On the other hand, if you have a good deal of property, you can begin planting evergreen trees in rows for eventual sale as Christmas trees. In order to maintain your supply year after year, you’ll need to continually plant new ones.
On average, you can expect to sell your authentic Christmas tree (pre-cut) for a price of $49 and potted trees for somewhere between$75 to $100.
In the off-season, this is seasonal work that may be varied with different trees or plants. However, these trees are very simple for newcomers to handle in comparison to other trees.
Can you plant trees in planters?
Absolutely! Yes, you can grow trees in containers as well as smaller plants. A potted tree needs more frequent watering and fertilization than a tree planted directly in the ground, but they will flourish for many years if properly cared for; therefore can be sold for a good deal of cash!
Container growing is becoming increasingly popular, particularly in settings with very little space. A big area of land is not necessary to grow a tree.
Check out the benefits of growing trees in planters & guide to planting trees in pots!
Planting guide: Keeping your trees healthy & choosing the right planters
Right tree & right Spot
Choose a tree appropriate for your location, then look for a location with sufficient sunlight and room for the tree’s mature foliage. Make sure there are no electricity lines, or underground utility lines before you start digging.
You must water trees, just like any other plant! Check to see whether your tree needs water if it hasn’t rained in a few weeks. Mature trees typically require one inch of water each week. In their first or second growing season, new trees need between 4 to 10 gallons every week.
Mulch protects tree roots from lawn mower cuts and helps avoid dry soil. You can help your trees by removing the grass beneath the tree and laying 2 to 4 inches of mulch. Take care not to cover the trunk’s base.
Natural plant materials nourish the soil around trees in the forest. However, in our yards, we sweep and remove all of the natural nutrients, such as leaves and grass clippings. Fertilizer fixes this problem. Apply a slow-release fertilizer on a regular basis to help the soil absorb nutrients. Also, examine your soil regularly to check if any components are missing or in short supply.
Top tips: When it comes to fertilizing and pesticides, young trees are more delicate, so make sure you do it during their peak growing season, which is generally in the spring.
Trimming trees properly removes any deadwood holding them back and enhances their shape. When the tree is dormant and without leaves, do some serious pruning. Focus on cleaning up and removing any tiny, dead, or damaged twigs throughout the summer.
Choosing the right planters
The container needs to be big enough to fit the tree; therefore, it is important to take the tree’s mature size into account while selecting a container so that the maturing tree and its roots have enough room to expand.
To provide the roots with the most possible insulation, containers should be as broad as they are tall.
Another factor that should be considered is the container’s total weight. In addition to the container’s own weight, estimate how much soil, trees, and water will add to it.
Another key consideration when selecting a container is drainage. Always make sure that containers have enough drainage holes for extra water by looking at the bottoms of the containers.
Learn more about The Shape And Size Of Pots For Plants.
Jay Scotts Featured Projects
See Our Planters Make A Difference
Learn how Jay Scotts planters are used to meet the goals of our customers – from the Philadelphia International Airport to the Gates Hotel South Beach in Miami.
Jay Scotts Fiberglass Planters are used in a number of different industries from customer-facing settings such as malls, restaurants, and public spaces to architects wanting to decorate an office complex or campus – our planters go above the industry standard for what’s possible with a planter!
FAQ: Most profitable tree to grow
Is planting trees a good investment?
According to a One Acre Fund study, a simple 200-shilling investment in tree seedlings can yield 40 times as much, or around 8,200 shillings, after 10 years when a mature tree is harvested.
Growing trees might not seem very thrilling at first, but it can be a surprisingly profitable long-term investment. As they mature, trees gain value enormously, have low labor expenses, and need very little initial investment if you have access to land.
How many trees per acre can you plant?
On average, 300 to 800 trees may be planted per acre. The figures might change depending on the environmental circumstances in a given area. This covers the types of crops you are planting as well as water, fertilizers, sunshine, and other environmental factors.
What is the fastest-producing fruit tree?
Fruit trees are a long-term investment, so there’s no use in wasting time on cultivating varieties that won’t thrive in your region or yield satisfying results.
Here are some of the most profitable fruit trees that produce fruit quickly.
- Peach trees: Peach trees are among the easiest and fastest-growing trees, but they can’t grow well in areas that frequently experience frost or very cold temperatures.
- Apple trees: Apple tree requires chill hours, therefore if you don’t have cold weather where you live, you can’t grow them.
- Citrus Fruit Trees: Citrus trees can only be grown in certain climates and locations. These trees can’t take any frosts, thus most places don’t have temperatures that are consistently high enough for you to put them outside.
Cultivating and Maintaining your plan
Tree farming is a long-term investment. Although the start-up expenditures might be overwhelming, once set up and planning are complete, earnings become regular and predictable.
You may have tremendous success growing trees for profit if you have the funds to get started, the resolve to plan, and the patience to wait for trees to develop.
Paired with your plants, our Jay Scotts professional-grade planters will ensure the happiness of your customers by offering a beautiful piece of functional decor that fits in any space or interior design. Using our planters, the botanic needs of your customers are met and exceeded.
Whether you’re supplying plants to homeowners or large commercial enterprises, Jay Scott’s planters are ideal for any plant project big or small.
All of our planters come with an industry-leading warranty, highlighting our dedication to quality and the affordability of our fiberglass planters.
Want to offer our planters to your new customers? Contact us today to learn more about the exciting opportunities our wholesale range can deliver!
Or better yet, give us a call and our sales consultants will be more than happy to walk you through any outstanding questions or requests you might have.