Welcome to Side Hustle Saturday, where I am posting all about our extra income opportunities and how we are adding to our savings bit by bit and hopefully also expanding our entrepreneurial sides and maybe finding some business opportunities for the future to cultivate and grow.
Seedling Side Business
So, two months ago we got our little side hustle up and running. I made it an August goal to start selling seedlings and see if we could make any money out of it, and it has paid off. It has also been extremely rewarding, a little time consuming but very beneficial to both me and Mr C for giving us (yet another thing!) to focus our energy on and one that we had to be outside to do (health bonus).
I had definitely stepped back with growing my own vegetables this year for fear that I was ‘wasting my time that I should be using to grow myself and my business’. Every other year I have been really absorbed in growing some staple vegetables and experimenting with some new ones too and I have loved it. But the time (and water) that it was taking was becoming a bit taxing when I thought that there were better ways I could be spending my time.
So I decided to make it a bit more beneficial and see if I could make a little money off it. We are still definitely experimenting and working through it but by next year I think we will have a pretty good little routine going!
So far we have grown and sold:
- Silver beet
And we have made a total of $104 over the two months and I am pretty pleased with that! Considering we just take a bit of time over the weekend to plant up or transplant new seedlings and then water them each day it really isn’t a strain to get it done, and if we continued to make $50 a month that would be a nice little $600 into our savings each year or would even pay for a holiday so no complaints here.
Where are we actually selling them? We sell them, mostly at my Mum and Dad’s individual work places. Mum has a clinic and Dad is in a hardware store and they just each take a box, all labelled up and pop them on the counter. Gradually they sell and there is really no pressure to sell them to people which is nice. We also advertised on the local Facebook Buy, Swap and Sell site and had a little stall out the front of our house one weekend so that went well too. Word of mouth is also really powerful.
As I said we are still experimenting but it is a lot easier than I expected and I think that if you have a bit of space everyone should try and give it a go.
We generally do our planting on Sundays since it is the only day we have enough time. We also watch Gardening Australia on Saturday nights while having dinner so we get a couple of tips on planting and often see what plants we should be planting at the time – some handy little hints!
Tips for getting a seedling side hustle underway:
- Start with plants you know how to grow
- Use easy to grow plants like greens and tomatoes as these are also really popular with people
- Buy good quality seeds
- Stock up on seed raising mix and potting mix
- Have a good supply of containers to plant in (we ran out very quickly!) save all drink and milk bottles to cut in half and anything else you have around the kitchen (just remember to put holes in the bottom)
- Get a rotation system going where you sow every few weeks to keep your supply up
- Expect the seedlings to take longer to grow than they should, to avoid disappointment
- Have an area where you can leave your seedlings and have them covered at night
- The more you water the better they will look for sale
- Have somewhere that you can regularly sell them from
- Sell them as cheap as you possibly can, and remember you are not a professional
- Have fun with it and keep a few for your own garden
I am sure that I will keep doing updates on how these sell and how I manage the little business and tips for getting the best crops for your dollars. With Spring starting in Australia this weekend would be the perfect time to get some little spinach and tomato plants going and in America the fall is when you want to start planting silver beet and kale, some real favourites for home growing! Have a go and let me know if you find it rewarding.
Any other ideas for side hustles, I would love to know or share what you are doing here!
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