Nursery vs Greenhouse – What’s The Difference?

Throughout American history, home gardens have been a reflection of the evolving lifestyles and needs of the gardeners tending to them. From the small-scale agricultural plots of Early America to the present-day small-space edibles, the concept of home gardening has endured, embracing both tradition and innovation.

In the 1700s, home gardens were vital for survival, providing essential edibles and medicinal herbs, as access to corner stores and markets was limited. The dooryard gardens, located near the front door, were practical and enclosed. As the 1800s progressed, the focus remained on sustenance with “kitchen gardens” prevalent among settlers moving westward. These gardens centered around fruit trees, vegetables, and herbs, emphasizing practicality over aesthetics.


Today, the American dream of a home with a garden has evolved into a dynamic and aesthetically pleasing space. Nurseries and commercial greenhouse companies offer a wide variety of plant options, catering to both ornamental and edible preferences. Homeowners seek to create a harmonious blend of beauty and functionality, embracing the inspiration from the past while incorporating modern ideas for sustainable and visually appealing garden spaces.

Nurseries Vs Greenhouses

Nurseries and greenhouses are both places where plants are grown, but they serve different purposes and have distinct use cases. A nursery is a facility dedicated to propagating and nurturing young plants, including trees, shrubs, and flowers. It is primarily focused on the early stages of plant growth, providing a wide range of plant species for landscaping and gardening purposes. Nurseries cater to garden centers, landscapers, and individual gardeners looking to purchase established plants to be transplanted into their gardens.

On the other hand, a greenhouse is a structure designed to create a controlled environment for year-round plant cultivation. It allows for the extended growth of plants outside of their natural growing season and protects them from adverse weather conditions. Greenhouses are used for various purposes, such as growing delicate or exotic plants, starting seeds early in the season, or cultivating specific crops in regions with unfavorable climates.

Local Businesses Benefit From Greenhouses

A local gardening business can reap numerous benefits from incorporating greenhouses into its operations. Greenhouses offer controlled environments that extend the growing season, protect plants from harsh weather conditions, and facilitate year-round cultivation. By investing in greenhouses, a gardening business can significantly enhance its productivity, diversify its offerings, and increase customer satisfaction. You can explore eight key points highlighting the advantages of greenhouses for a local gardening business:

  • Extended Growing Season

Greenhouses enable the gardening business to grow plants beyond their natural seasons, providing a wider variety of products throughout the year. For instance, fresh vegetables like tomatoes and cucumbers can be cultivated during winter months, meeting the demand for locally sourced produce even in colder climates. Every gardening zone in the country and other geographical regions of the world is experiencing the wrath of climate change. To overcome the uncertainty of production and ensure crop yields, it is better to switch to greenhouses.

  • Year-Round Revenue

With the ability to grow plants throughout the year, the gardening business can maintain a steady revenue stream. By offering products consistently, the business can attract and retain loyal customers who appreciate the availability of fresh produce and plants regardless of the season. This also means that if the supply of a vegetable or a fruit is linked to a bad crop due to climatic stress, you still have an abundance to meet the demand and profit from the hike in prices due to demand.

  • Protected Cultivation

Greenhouses shield plants from extreme weather events, pests, and diseases, minimizing crop losses and ensuring healthier and higher-quality plants. For example, a sudden frost won’t damage delicate flowers or herbs, allowing the business to meet customers’ demands for pristine plants.

  • Diversification of Plant Offerings

With greenhouses, the gardening business can expand its range of plant offerings. It can experiment with exotic or rare species that are not native to the local climate, appealing to plant enthusiasts seeking unique additions to their gardens. Mixed farms are always more profitable as they can use the space more efficiently. For instance, along with tall citrus plants, you can grow shrub fruits like strawberries. Ginger and garlic can be planted as companion crops for symbiotic advantage.

  • Customization and Specialty Products

Greenhouses enable the business to create custom growing conditions tailored to specific plant needs. For instance, it can maintain a tropical environment for orchids or cacti, becoming a go-to source for specialty plants that other competitors might not offer.

  • Efficient Resource Management

Greenhouses allow better control over water usage, fertilizer application, and energy consumption, resulting in more sustainable and cost-effective operations. By optimizing resource management, the gardening business can reduce expenses and improve its overall profitability.

  • Nursery Seedling Production

Greenhouses provide an ideal environment for starting seedlings and propagating young plants. This allows the gardening business to produce its inventory of young plants, reducing reliance on external suppliers and ensuring better quality control over its products. Nursery seedling production in greenhouses allows the gardening business to have full control over the germination process, ensuring optimal conditions for seedling growth. This level of control results in healthier and more robust young plants, which ultimately translates to higher customer satisfaction and increased demand for the nursery’s products.

  • Plant Trials and Research

With greenhouses, the gardening business can conduct plant trials and research to determine which plants thrive best in the local environment. This knowledge can inform future business decisions and allow the business to offer plants that are well-suited to the region’s climate and soil conditions.


A green corner, however small, is fulfilling and soothing to the eyes. People living in small apartments are also investing in balcony gardens and trying to grow in their containers. This trend is only catching up with Pinterest and Instagram allowing garden influencers from moving away from their blogs to make inspiring videos about growing plants. This is the ideal time for local plant suppliers to scale their business by offering the best plants grown in greenhouses and nurseries that will elevate the decor and space of their future owners.

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