Many people get into gardening almost entirely because they love the flavor of a freshly grown tomato. They’re a fantastic high-demand vegetable to help people learn how to garden and get a good harvest.
But what about when you’re ready to sell tomato plants? If your garden has gotten big enough, you’re starting to sell seedlings, or happen to have started more tomatoes than you needed, it can be hard to know the value of a tomato plant.
Most tomato plants cost $3.50 – $5.98 at big retailers. Some varieties can cost as much as $6.98 per plant. Purchasing in bulk usually allows for discounted prices.
The truth is that the value of a single tomato depends a lot on its variety, where you’re growing it, and what kind of demand there is for tomato plants in your area. Here’s everything you need to know to decide on the right price for your tomato plants.
Can You Make Money Selling Tomato Plants?
Yes, you can, but it can be trickier than you think. For one thing, starting a lot of healthy seedling tomatoes can be harder than you think, and those little seedlings need a lot of early care and tending to make sure they put their best foot forward in front of buyers.
The value of a tomato plant goes down quickly with every yellow leaf and sign of scarring or damage on the tomato.
Selling tomatoes can be profitable, but you need to know what kind of tomatoes are popular in your area. Plant swaps and gardening clubs can be good to find out what varieties are most popular in your area.
The other thing to consider is that heirloom plants are almost always more valuable and more profitable than generic stock plants. However, some varieties, like beefsteak tomatoes, usually sell more individual plants, even though each plant is worth less than an heirloom would be.
Making money from tomato plants is all about having the right strategy and choosing the right cultivars for your local area.
Next, let’s talk about the value of different kinds of tomato plants.
Why Are Heirloom Tomato Plants More Valuable?
There are a few reasons why heirloom tomato plants are more valuable and why growers are often willing to pay more for these finicky plants.
Heirloom tomatoes refer to tomatoes that have been around for a long time, primarily unchanged. Many heirloom varieties have been passed down by Native populations or in household gardens for generations of a single-family.
There are a lot of varieties of heirloom tomatoes and a lot of different meanings to heirloom. Most heirlooms are softer, more flavorful, and might have a wider variety of colors and shapes than other tomato plants.
Since heirloom tomatoes are often more flavorful than other modern varieties, they can be a lot more popular with gardeners. Heirlooms are also sold at grocery stores, which means that gardeners who successfully grow their own heirloom tomatoes save more money than gardeners who grow modern ones.
So, you can almost always sell an heirloom tomato plant for more than you can sell a regular tomato plant. The rarer the heirloom, or the more desirable the heirloom traits, the more valuable the plant will be.
Productivity also matters too, though. Many heirlooms are less productive than regular tomato plants, so you need to consider how many tomatoes each plant can produce when they’re healthy.
What Other Varieties Of Tomatoes Are Worth Selling?
There’s a market for almost all varieties of tomatoes, which means that there are gardeners interested in most types of tomato plants. But, there are many things to consider when you’re thinking about which tomato plants to raise for sale.
Here are some of the things you should consider when deciding how much a tomato plant is worth and whether it’s worth raising tomato plants of each type for sale.
How Hard Is It To Grow
There are two reasons this is an essential consideration for what kind of tomato plants you will grow. Difficult tomatoes will take more of your time, which means you’re putting more resources into each plant.
But, challenging to grow tomatoes are also likely to have a lower demand because only more experienced gardeners are going to be able to grow them effectively.
Experienced gardeners are usually more willing to spend money on specialized plants, especially cultivars of tomatoes they haven’t grown before. Still, they’re also a lot more likely to seed save and grow their own seedlings instead of buying them from a nursery.
So, there is a point where certain varieties are likely more difficult than they’re worth.
How Versatile Are The Tomatoes?
Different varieties produce tomatoes that are good for different things. You want green tomatoes for frying, cherry tomatoes for snacking, and Roma tomatoes for sauces.
Specialized tomatoes are great, but you also want to have versatile tomatoes because they’re often popular with gardeners. A tomato that’s good for making sauce and good as a slicing tomato is a rare thing, and it will be more valuable because of it.
How Productive Is Your Tomato Plant?
Productivity is one of the most essential traits for tomato plant value. The value of a plant is related to how many tomatoes it could theoretically produce. But it’s also related to the size of the tomato.
For instance, a tomato plant that will produce dozens of cherry tomatoes will still produce less overall tomato by weight than a beefsteak tomato plant that produces the same number of tomatoes.
Since those two plants have different purposes and produce differently specialized tomatoes, they might have similar value, but if one of those tomato types is less popular in your area, you should probably price it lower.
Hi there, my name is Allie and welcome to my blog; GareningWithAllie!
Much of what you see written here is just our personal experiences with gardening. Along with the content I write here, there is also a unique collection of gardening topics covered by some of our close friends. I hope you find everything you read here to be helpful, informative, and something that can make your gardening journey the most lovely experience ever! With that said, Happy Gardening!