The Green Industry

The green industry in Pennsylvania consists of four main categories, landscaping, ornamentals, floriculture, and turf and each has unique markets and strengths.
The Green Industry - Articles


According to the United States Department of Agriculture's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), the green industry had sales of over $112M collectively in 2015.

The landscaping industry consists of lawn mowing services for both homes and businesses, planting and maintenance of annuals, perennials, and trees. In 2014, the PA industry had sales of approximately $47M. Tree pruning may also be considered a part of the landscape industry however will require more specialized skills and equipment. If the landscape business does not provide tree trimming services, the services are relegated to occur from early spring through the fall months. Some landscaping services offer snow removal during the winter months to supplement their income. When housing sales are strong, landscaping contractors are usually very busy because new homes require their services and when people buy existing homes, they sometimes replace the existing trees and shrubs.

Producers of ornamentals may sell to landscape contractors or to individuals who wish to do their own planting. Some Christmas tree operations offer bagged and balled trees to landscape contractors and individuals. Ornamentals are usually started in a greenhouse and moved outside so the plants become acclimated to the outdoors and are sold in containers. Having a wide variety of products will be necessary to serve the market as everyone's tastes are different. Penn State Extension has information covering plant pathology and pruning of ornamentals.

The floriculture industry consists of bedding and garden plants, foliage plants (both indoor and outdoor), and cut flowers and greens used by florists. In 2014, the floriculture industry had sales of almost $200M in both wholesale and retail markets. Most floriculture production is in in a greenhouse.

The turf industry consists of selling turf that has been produced on large areas, cut and sold in smaller sections to sell for lawn establishment or renovation, golf course maintenance, and athletic field maintenance among others. In 2014, sales of sod was over $4M. Penn State Extension provides information in professional turf grass management, and weed management in turf.

Penn State Extension has developed many resources for potential and existing entrepreneurs in the green industry. These resources are available on-line and may be found on the Extension web site. Use the list below as your search terms to conduct your research.

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Green Industry

Landscaping Industry