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List of Equipment You Need to Start a Plant Nursery [Cost Included]

Outdoor living spaces have become as important to most people as indoor spaces. Plants and flowers of all types tend to make those outdoor spaces look and smell wonderful. For numerous folks, visiting the local plant nursery to pick out plants to boost their landscaping is a must every spring.

Truth be told, the love of everything green is the primary reason why the US nursery and garden industry is witnessing massive growth and is projected at a mind-blowing $42 billion. Ideally, it is very possible to start your own plant nursery, even in your backyard, and get a share of that market.

To be able to start a plant nursery business, there is a wide range of tools and instruments you need to acquire to guarantee that you can sustain a healthy, successful operation. These will most often encompass things like gardening tools, planting supplies, transportation, and storage systems.

Note that the cost of purchasing these tools and instruments can vary exponentially and will most often depend on the size and type of nursery you are operating. Aside from that, the exact tools you need will also depend on the number of plants you are producing and selling.

Nevertheless, to help point you in the right direction, below are the basic equipment and tools you need to start and operate a plant nursery business in the United States.

List of Equipment You Need to Start a Plant Nursery

  1. Trowel

A hand-held trowel remains one of the most vital tools needed in this line of business. It helps with a wide range of everyday gardening tasks, such as breaking up clumps of soil, digging small holes, transplanting seedlings, and even digging up weeds.

If you are looking to invest in one piece of entry-level gardening equipment, make it this–select one with a solid metal blade and sturdy wooden handle.

  • Digging and Planting
  • Weeding
  • Transferring Soil
  • Loosening Soil
  • Cutting Roots
Cost : $9 to $16
  1. Knives and Pruners

Without a doubt, a plant nursery will need the best pruner available since it will be needed daily. Right from pruning hybrid rootstock to cutting iris fans, from trimming low-hanging branches to taking cuttings for vegetative propagation, the pruner remains one of the most vital tools to own.

While pruners are needed to take evergreen cuttings, the knife is known to carry out quick work of perennial and annual species vegetative propagation.

  • Trimming small branches
  • Cutting stems
  • Deadheading flowers
  • Cutting twine or plant ties
Costs: $14 – $30
  1. Shovels and spades

This is another very important piece of equipment for a plant nursery. You have to understand that a heavy, metal-clad wooden shaft with a blade that could very well be sharpened makes the shovel the workhorse of a nursery operation.

Do not look at the prices when making this purchase as cheap shovels tend to break easily. The spade is a basic digging and planting tool, whereas long-handled shovels are used to mix or move soils.

  • Digging soil
  • Turning soil
  • Moving soil
  • Spreading compost
  • Transplanting and dividing plants
  • Cutting sod
  • Edging
Cost: $3.98 to $184
  1. Rakes of All Types

The hard rake, which is most often referred to as a concrete rake, is meant to remove rocks from a planting bed, level the planting surface, and do away with debris from a field.

The hard rake when turned upside down can be used to break up clumping soil clods, and when turned on its side is used to pry out rocks and branches from the nursery planting bed. Howbeit, the more conversant, flexible, fan-shaped leaf rake is leveraged to clean up organic material and small debris and to finish off or clean up a planting field.

  • Breaking soil clumps
  • Smoothing the soil
  • Collecting debris
  • Raking fallen leaves
Cost : $15 to $120
  1. Gardening Hose or Watering Can

To manage a plant nursery, you will need some device or container for watering your plants. If you have just a few plants in pots, then a pitcher or usual water bottle may be adequate when starting out. A water can is very necessary as it can be used not only for watering but also for deck or patio cleaning.

  • Watering plants
Cost : $15 to $239
  1. Gardening Gloves

Although a good number of people won’t touch soil without gardening gloves; howbeit, they’re technically not necessary, especially when it comes to lighter-duty tasks like a small plant nursery. Nevertheless, they are known to help prevent blisters and scratches, as well as ensure that your hands stay clean.

Ensure to go for gloves with reinforced fingertips and padding for added protection, as well as pinchable wrist straps to keep soil from getting inside.


Protect the hands from thorns, splinters, blisters, and stubborn dirt from getting on your fingers and under your nails.

Cost : $2 – $11
  1. Kneeling Pad

If you also don’t want to bother about soreness from kneeling for a very long period of time, you must consider this comfort item. A good number of shops sell or offer rectangular foam pads that you can place under your knees while you work.


Provide cushioning for your knees and make it more convenient to stay in one position for long periods of time.

Cost : $8 to $22
  1. Wheelbarrow

This is another vital tool every gardener needs to have. A wheelbarrow in numerous ways helps to ease the burden of moving awkward and heavy gardening materials around your nursery. It can be utilized to move dirt, compost, and even stacks of leaves.

  • Heavy plants
  • Pots
  • Soil
  • Rocks and pavers
  • Edging
  • Bricks
  • tools and equipment
  • Trimmed branches
  • Weeds and fallen leaves
Cost : $89 to $400
  1. Garden Hoe

You will need this equipment, at least if not for moving soils, for weeding. Nevertheless, note that a sharp blade works better and is easier to use. Ensure to keep the blade sharp and hoe the weeds in the evenings because this prevents the weeds from germination.

It can also be used when preparing beds for planting and weeding. They make it possible for you to quickly dig a shallow trench in the soil that’s ideal for planting seeds just below the surface.

  • Weeding without the need to bend
  • Digging and breaking soil
  • Scraping and clearing the soil
  • Harvesting root vegetables
Cost : $4.98 to $63.
  1. Hand-Held Weeder

This is indeed among the best types of gardening tools you will need. This tool is meant for weeding and doing away with smaller roots that get in your way when you are trying to plant. The strong head is moved into the ground and easily cuts through roots.

The shaft of the tool comes with a slight bend to it, and this makes it easy to lever this tool back and forth and to pull up anything that is in your way when planting.


Facilitate weed removal without spraying

Cost : $4 to $19

Noted above are the basic tools and instruments you need to acquire to guarantee that you can sustain a healthy, successful operation. Nevertheless, the cost of purchasing these tools and instruments can vary exponentially and will most often depend on the size and type of nursery you are operating.