Starting your own herb growing business won’t take you much time at all. In fact you can be on your way to earning profits—good profits—in under a month. Here’s how you
can succeed in the herbal business:
First of all, you need a place for the plants to grow. You can build a mini-greenhouse/raised bed for under $300. It’s important to have access to the mini-greenhouse/raised bed from all sides and that it has plenty of sunlight, so don’t locate it next to a tree or other shaded area. A 40 inch wide by 30 foot long raised bed/mini-greenhouse is a good size. That’ll give you room for about 400 potted plants (it’s recommended you use six-inch pots – a bigger size will produce a bigger plant).
Next you’ll need a good mixture of potting soil. This mixture, used by many professional herb growers, should do the trick:
8 cubic feet topsoil.
8 cubic feet washed sand
4 cubic feet perlite
12 cubic feet peat moss
10 pounds dolomite lime
10 pounds dry organic fertilizer
After you’ve decided what herbs you’d like to grow, you can buy herb seeds online from places such as Johnny’s Seeds and Richter’s. Be sure to focus on the most popular culinary and medicinal herbs to boost your sales.
Now you’re ready to begin growing! Soon those profits will be growing too. Many of your seeds will germinate within a week or two. Take good care of them. Only use organic fertilizers. These will help your herbs with a low-stress growth rate. Also, every week during the growing season, apply a liquid seaweed or liquid fish emulsion as a foliar spray. This will provide healthy nutrients.
It’s also important not to over water your plants. Generally water them just once a day in the morning. Also be mindful of which herbs can still grow in cold weather and which ones might need to be started indoors.
When your herbs are grown, you’re ready to start selling them. Based on your local laws, maybe you can sell them right out of your own garden. Or perhaps you can set up a roadside stand. A charity fundraiser can be a great place to sell potted herbs and people are often willing to pay more for them if they know some of the profits are going to a good cause. One grower in our area sells her herbs at 6 charity fundraisers every summer, and grossed over $32,000 at those six. She donates 25% to the charity. Win-win! The farmer’s market is another great place to get customers. The larger 6″ potted herbs seem to do better at farmer’s markets than the smaller 3 & 4 inch sizes, as folks are in a spending mood, and like buying a plant that’s almost ready to harvest.
Make up flyers and put them up on local bulletin boards. Or consider having business cards printed. One successful grower puts a recipe on the back and found that customers are less likely to throw them out. Whatever you do, add your personal, creative touch, and you’ll find the customers will keep coming back.
In under a month you can be in the herb growing business. It’s really pretty easy too. Grow your herbs and get out and start selling them! Soon enough you could be on your way to big profits. To learn more, read Growing Herbs for Profit.