734-213-6911 | 4100 S. Maple Road Ann Arbor, MI 48108

Nursery stock shortages in 2014 – What does this mean to you?

We have received several emails lately from our suppliers to brace for nursery stock shortages this coming year.  Why would this be happening now? Well, unfortunately it takes a long time for many of the plants we buy to reach the sizes they need to be for installation in the landscape. 

Tree Nursery 2


From 2007 to 2010 the economy has gone through some major blows, and this directly affected the amount of plant material that nurseries were planting.  Demand went down, so production went down.  Now that the demand is back, there may not be enough plant material to fulfill that demand. 


Digital illustration of Business Graph in 3d on white background

What does this mean for us?  Unfortunately, probably a big hike in plant prices! Plant prices go up every year, but this year it may jump significantly more than normal with several fluctuations throughout the growing season.  We’ve already seen significant price increases from the Spring of 2013 to the Fall of 2013.  Some plants as much as a 20% increase from one month to the next.


What can we do about it?  Well, we can work with our suppliers to find out what plants are likely to be available in larger quantities and plan for them.  Also, planning your landscape now will allow you first dibs on the plant material coming into the nurseries right away in the spring.  Having some flexibility in your plan will also allow for us to make the best choices for you and your budget based on current availability.  As much as we try to know availability when designing your landscape, this availability can fluctuate daily and plants can sell out between the time of design completion and project installation.            

We anticipate that these shortages will likely be for the newest cultivars in larger sizes.  This is disappointing because there are some awesome plants available now for your landscape!  For now we will have to roll with the punches and see what it looks like in the Spring, but we will always do the best that we can for our clients to give you the best landscape for your site.  If you are thinking of a landscape project for 2014, get the ball rolling on your landscape design so that you can have prime choice of plant material in the event that these shortages do indeed occur.  We also anticipate that most of the plants will likely have shortages in certain sizes rather than not be available at all.

We are hoping for a great season, and there are so many plants out there, that we are confident we can find you a suitable substitution if the plant material you desire becomes unavailable.