Plant lover's world-wide can turn a hobby into a profitable business using a little hard work and common sense. Using what you already have (your backyard and plants) a little start-up capital (seeds and stuff) starting a home nursery can be an inexpensive part time or full time business. It is important before beginning to find out any local, state, and country regulations on small business and home nurseries. Some areas will require you to purchase a business license which can end up being one of the higher start-up costs of your new business.
When growing plants to sell a greenhouse of some sort is important. You will need the plants to be at the right size to sell when the time comes to sell them. People do the bulk of their landscape and garden buying in the spring. They get excited from being cooped up all winter and want to get out and spend, spend, spend their money and they can spend it on your plants.
Utilizing your local farmers market is a great and cheap way to set up shop. This will save on retail rent and other expenses that a brick and mortar self owned business might incur. Farmers markets are places where people can grow and sell local produce and plants. Locating one of these is a good way to see if you have what it takes to start, run, and maintain your own business.
Growing plants from seed or cuttings is the way to go if you're looking for a cheap way to start. It's fun to sell the latest and greatest plants but they normally have to be sold from divisions and are often patented which will cause a lot of headaches to a newcomer to the nursery business. Think cheap at the beginning and don't try to get too fancy too early.
Although finding the latest and greatest plants can be out of your league if you can find a similar plant that you can sell which looks enough like the "special new" version you can ride a little of the fad without the added problems of dealing with the patented plant. Don't claim your plant is something it's not but don't go out of your way to explain that this plant may not be the same yellow flower that everyone is growing everywhere this year.
Once you have chosen your location, grown some plants, and are ready to start selling you need to ensure that you have enough of a variety of plants to get people browsing through your selection. Don't expect to set up shop with 3 daisies and a peony and expect to make a fortune. You need to have at least 10-12 different types of plants ready to go at all times throughout the selling season. You can target a particular type of garden but have a nice selection of plants to sell for that garden type.
If selling plants for shade from your home nursery get 3-5 Hosta plants, a few brightly colored Heucheras, a couple different Astilbe varieties, a couple of shade loving shrubs (grown from cuttings), and some annuals such as Coleus. Hmmm I didn't come up with any flowering plants you'll have to think of those items yourself. Think bright eye-catching and money taking colors. A few brightly colored plants will = impulse purchases from people just looking around.
Starting a home nursery doesn't have to be an expensive process but it can be if you don't look at the cheapest and most efficient method of operation. Start out cheap and quick and work your way up to a fancy store or online business. Just remember to follow all local laws regarding the selling of plants (or anything else).