Contract Growing

The Advantages of Custom Growing

1.) Price: One of the biggest contributors that influences pricing in our industry is unwanted or excess inventory. Viable plants cannot be easily stored for future use as many other commodities can. Not only is storage of trees difficult, but in time trees will out grow their container and will have to be up shifted into larger sizes. All growers then will have to decide whether to spend more labor and added materials, in hopes of a sale later, or to discard the plant and take the loss at this time. Custom growing then allows us to better control our inventory which in turn gives you a better price. Feel free to contact us for price quotes not listed in the catalog, or visit us on our website for a complete price listing.

2.) Availability: Shortages of popular varieties often plagues our industry. Trees cannot be manufactured on demand, but must be grown to size. Custom growing can then alleviate many of these shortage problems.

3.) Size and Variety Request: Our catalog contains only the varieties and sizes currently available. If a container grown tree not listed in our catalog is preferred, we can purchase them as a bare root tree and grow them to be containerized to the size requested. Custom growing then affords us access to a wider variety of trees.

4.) Northern Grown: Tree hardiness variability is dependent on many factors. All of our trees are grown exclusively at one of our two sites for one or more years before being sold. This assures you that we will not sell to you a tree that is suspected borderline hardy to our area.

5.) Container Variants: As container trees increase in popularity, so also will the dreaded restrictive and circular root systems that often accompanies them. We offer root pruning technology in either poly or fabric design pots. Other options include, cooler external white walled pots, injection or blow molded, special decorative pots, or even pots customized with your name on them.

6.) Pre-Purchase Inspections: You don’t have to wait until delivery to see what kind of trees you’ve purchased. Inspection of your stock is welcomed and encouraged by us to help us meet your expectations and demands.

7.) Less Run Around: Baker Lake Nursery is a relatively small family operated business. Whether your questions pertain to, sales, production, warranty, availability, hardiness, or other related issues, chances are all of your questions will be answered by the first person you talk to. The small nature of our business conveys a very personal touch.

8.) Less Anxiety: It seems that orders have to be placed earlier each year in an effort to get selected stock before it’s gone. Custom growing will then keep you ahead of the game and will allow you some comfort in knowing that your succeeding order has already been taken care of.

9.) No Minimums: We believe that everyone should be treated equal no matter what the size of your order. Why be penalized by having to purchase more than what you may want? It’s not the size of the order that matters but the placement of the order that’s important.

10.) Minimum Obligation: All custom growing orders will be taken in good faith. We only ask that the order placement be of educated and sincere estimates of your needs.

By entering into a custom growing agreement with us we are not insinuating an absolute requirement for you to buy, but only a reasonable estimation to do so. None of us can
accurately predict market trends or short term demand fluctuations. We expect need changes to occur in your operation just as they do in ours. We also understand the need for quality in this industry. Because the volatility factor of quality of our stock hinges on many aspects of control, we do not ask for any advance payments to be made by you. Inspection of your stock is welcomed and encouraged by us to help us meet proper expectations and demands.

Like the common old saying goes, “if you fail to plan, your plan could fail”. Custom growing seems to be a win situation for all parties involved. If retirement will soon not be knocking on your door, then maybe we both need to knock on more doors.

(Budded Northwood Maple)

Most deciduous trees are asexually propagated either by softwood cuttings or via budding. Several different budding procedures are used to obtain desirable results. Budding is done in early August and are usually sufficiently adhered in 3-6 weeks. This late Sept. photo shows an adhered dormant bud that will remain this way until spring.

(One year Ivory Silk Lilac in early fall)

Ivory Silk Lilac can be propagated either from cuttings or thru budding. This section is custom grown from budding which will consistently produce a more extensive root
system when compared to rooted cuttings. This custom growing procedure will then allow for better transplant

(Emerging Crabapples)

All budded seedlings are cut off just above the selected inserted bud shortly before growth begins. Stainless steel Grow Straights® are used to deflect the emerging growth sharply upward. This helps eliminate unsightly dog-legs.

(2 gallon Swiss Stone Pine)

We have given up trying to locate a quality 2 or 3 year evergreen seedling. All of our evergreens are now grown from 1 year plugs and can be either container or field grown. Proper spacing and weed removal are critically vital for proper branching to proceed. Custom growing helps us manage our up shifting and fertility programs.

(First year crabapples in mid summer)

Most budded stock will grow to be 3-6 foot whips during the first season. These trees allow us the option to be harvested at year end or to be grown on for one more season. Custom growing management then allows us to better plan pruning and staking requirements.

(Black Hills Spruce)

Field grown evergreens can reduce overall cost because of less labor requirements. These spruce trees will be dug early next
spring, usually late March. Custom growing management then allows us to either pot them directly into fiber pots for quick
resale, or to containerize them into properly sized pots for future sales.

Custom Growing
For Garden Centers and Growers