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Business analysis of foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida
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 Material Information
Title: Business analysis of foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida
Series Title: Economic information report
Portion of title: Foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida
Physical Description: v. : ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: University of Florida -- Food and Resource Economics Dept
Florida Cooperative Extension Service
Publisher: Food and Resource Economics Dept., Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville
Creation Date: 1986
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 Subjects
Subjects / Keywords: Foliage plant industry -- Economic aspects -- Periodicals -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Nurseries (Horticulture) -- Economic aspects -- Periodicals -- Florida   ( lcsh )
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 Related Items
Preceded by: Business analysis for foliage and potted flowering plant nurseries in Central Florida

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front cover
    Abstract
        Page i
    Acknowledgements
        Page i
    Table of Contents
        Page ii
    List of Tables
        Page iii
        Page iv
    Main
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        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
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        Page 6
        Page 7
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        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
Full Text



' J. Robert Strain


Alan W. Hodges


Business Analysis of Foliage Plant
Nurseries in Central Florida, 1986


m* -
r
.r:~' :'~e ice
I :-~v~~ I


I ----0


Food & Resource Economics Department
Agricultural Experiment Stations
Cooperative Extension Service
Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences
University of Florida, Galnesvlle 32611


December 1987


Economic Information
Report 239


I
















ABSTRACT


Average sales, costs and returns information are presented for 35 wholesale
foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida for the tax year of 1986. Average
value of plant sales was $487,548. Cash costs including a return to the opera-
tor averaged $439,980. Non-cash costs and allowances including a 12 percent
return on investment amounted to another $78,320. Deducting the return to
operator and return on investment left total costs of $436,784. After
adjustments for change in plant inventory value and additions for miscellaneous
income, net nursery income averaged $71,351, and return to capital averaged 9.55
percent. Comparable information is presented also for the average of the eleven
largest and twelve smallest nurseries in the study.

KEY WORDS: Foliage nursery business analysis, income, costs, investment,
efficiency measures, Central Florida.











ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

This report was made possible by the cooperating 35 foliage plant nursery
operators who made available their production and accounting records on a con-
fidential basis for analysis and averaging. Assistance and encouragement were
supplied by Extension Ornamental Horticultural Agents Bruce Barmby, Gary Brinen,
Terry DelValle, Cathy Neal, Roger Newton, and Jerald Southwell. Acknowledgement
and appreciation of the help received, however, does not alter the fact that
errors in the data or in the interpretation of the information presented herein
are the sole responsibility of the authors.
















ABSTRACT


Average sales, costs and returns information are presented for 35 wholesale
foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida for the tax year of 1986. Average
value of plant sales was $487,548. Cash costs including a return to the opera-
tor averaged $439,980. Non-cash costs and allowances including a 12 percent
return on investment amounted to another $78,320. Deducting the return to
operator and return on investment left total costs of $436,784. After
adjustments for change in plant inventory value and additions for miscellaneous
income, net nursery income averaged $71,351, and return to capital averaged 9.55
percent. Comparable information is presented also for the average of the eleven
largest and twelve smallest nurseries in the study.

KEY WORDS: Foliage nursery business analysis, income, costs, investment,
efficiency measures, Central Florida.











ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

This report was made possible by the cooperating 35 foliage plant nursery
operators who made available their production and accounting records on a con-
fidential basis for analysis and averaging. Assistance and encouragement were
supplied by Extension Ornamental Horticultural Agents Bruce Barmby, Gary Brinen,
Terry DelValle, Cathy Neal, Roger Newton, and Jerald Southwell. Acknowledgement
and appreciation of the help received, however, does not alter the fact that
errors in the data or in the interpretation of the information presented herein
are the sole responsibility of the authors.








TABLE OF CONTENTS
Page
ABSTRACT . . . ... . . . i
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS . . . . . . . .
LIST OF TABLES . . . . ... .......... iii
LIST OF FIGURES. . . . . . .. . iv
INTRODUCTION . . . . .. . . .. .1
PROCEDURE. . . . . ... . . .... 1
DEFINITIONS. . . . . ... . . . 3
DATA AND RESULTS . . . . ... . . .. 4
Size of Business . . . . .. . . 4
Rates of Production. . . . . ... ... 6
Labor Efficiency . . . . .. . .. 7
The Use of Space . . . . .. . . 8
Efficiency in the Use of Capital . . . . 10
Dollar Costs by Expense Category* . . . . ... 12
Percent of Total Costs by Expense Category* . . ... 14
Cost Per Square Foot of Total Bed and Bench Space* . . .. 16
Cost Per Square Foot of Propagating and Finishing Space* ...... 18
Cost Per Dollar of Sales Adjusted for Inventory Change*. . ... 20
Cost Per Dollar of Sales*. . . . . . ... 22
Income Summary . . . . . . 24
Total Gain . . . . . . . 24
Net Nursery Income . . . . ... . .. 24
Return on Capital. . . . . . 24
Balance Sheet . . . . . . .. 26
Current Assets . . . . . . 26
Long Term Assets . . . . . ... 26
Total Assets . . . . . . 27
Liabilities. . . . . . . .. 27
Net Worth . . . . . . .. 28
Total Profitability Model . . . . .. 28
Margin Management . . . . . .. 28
Asset Management . . . . . .. 28
Leverage Management . . . . . ... 28
Factors Associated With Level of Profits . . . .. 30
Size of Business . . . . . . 30
Production Rate. . . . . . . 30
Labor Efficiency . . . . . . 32
Space Use Intensity . . . . . 32
Use of Capital . . . . . . 33
Level of Costs . . . . . . 33
Cost Efficiency. . . . . . . 34
Growth in Sales . . . . . . 34
Range of Figures . . . . . . .. 34
Seasonalty of Sales . . . . . 36
CONCLUDING COMMENTS. . . . . .... . 36

*These sections also contain the following subcategories:
Salaries and Wages
Production Supplies Total Cash Costs
Other Production Costs Non-cash costs
Administrative and Overhead Total all costs










LIST OF TABLES


Table Page
1 Size of business, 35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in
Central Florida, 1986. . . . . .... .. 5

2 Rates of production, 35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in
Central Florida, 1986. ... . . ... . 6

3 Labor efficiency, 35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in
Central Florida, 1986. ................ . 7

4 The use of space, 35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in
Central Florida, 1986. . . . . ... .. 9

5 Efficiency in the use of capital,
35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida, 1986. 11

6 Dollar costs by expense category,
35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida, 1986. 13

7 Percent of total costs by expense category,
35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida, 1986. 15

8 Costs per square foot of total bed and bench space,
35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida, 1986. 17

9 Costs per square foot of propagating and finishing space,
35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida, 1986. 19

10 Costs per dollar of sales adjusted for change in plant inventory,
35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida, 1986. 21

11 Cost per dollar of sales (no adjustment for change in plant inventory,
35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida, 1986 . 23

12 Income summary, 35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in
Central Florida, 1986. . . . ... ...... .25

13 Balance sheet, 35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in
Central Florida, 1986. . . . . . 27

14 Factors associated with level of profit, 35 wholesale
foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida, 1986. . ... 31

15 Range of figures on factors associated with level of profit,
35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida, 1986. 35












LIST OF FIGURES


Figure Page
1 Total profitability model, 35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in
Central Florida, 1986 .. .. .. .. .. .. 29

2 Monthly sales compared to average monthly costs, 35 wholesale foliage
plant nurseries in Central Florida, 1986 . .... . 37














BUSINESS ANALYSIS OF FOLIAGE PLANT NURSERIES IN CENTRAL FLORIDA, 1986


J. Robert Strain and Alan Hodges


INTRODUCTION


This publication contains information on sales, costs, returns and produc-
tion efficiency for foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida for 1986. Other
publications in this series include reports on South Florida foliage plant
nurseries, Dade County Florida foliage plant nurseries, Florida flowering plant
nurseries, Florida woody ornamental container plant nurseries and Florida woody
ornamental field nurseries.
Purposes of the nursery business analysis series include:
1) Furnishing nursery operators with various physical and economic measures
that may be used in evaluating the efficiency of individual nurseries;
2) Supplying cooperating nursery operators with data so that they may make
more informed management decisions;
3) Providing individuals considering entering the wholesale plant production
business with an estimate of the input requirement and revenue potential;
4) and Providing Florida Extension personnel with data for conducting
educational programs with nursery operators.


PROCEDURE


The information and averages presented in this report are based on data
supplied by 35 nursery operators in the form of confidential production and ac-
counting records. Their nurseries are located in the Coastal and Central Flor-
ida counties of Alachua, Duval, Hardee, Hillsborough, Lake, Orange, and Semi-
nole. They participated in the program voluntarily and do not represent a sta-


J. ROBERT STRAIN is an extension economist and professor, and ALAN HODGES
is a research assistant, both in IFAS Food and Resource Economics Department,
University of Florida, Gainesville.











tistically selected sample. In fact, the nursery operators participating in the
Florida Nursery Business Analysis Program are thought to represent some of the
more efficient foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida, rather than being
typical of the foliage plant nursery industry.
Data were collected for the 1986 tax year. In some cases, data were
received for a fiscal year that did not coincide with the 1986 calendar year.
Data for fiscal years ending after July 1, 1985 and up to June 30, 1987 were
included with the 1986 calendar year data.
Not all nursery operators drew a regular salary from their operation. In
these instances, an estimate of the value of the time of the operator was col-
lected and used in the analysis in order to provide a more equitable basis for
comparing data. For the same reason, interest expense paid by the individual
nursery operator was excluded from the costs listed in this report. Instead, an
interest charge for the total owned investment was calculated at the rate of 12
percent per year and included as a non-cash cost allowance.
The value of owned capital or investment in the nursery reflects the depre-
ciated book value of buildings, improvements, machinery and equipment. This is
a total value; related debt is not deducted in determining this value of capital
owned. Growing plants also are included as a part of the owned capital
investment, but at a value lower than the regular wholesale price. This is
because, in a normal growing operation, most of the plants in inventory are not
of a salable size. Some will barely be started, some ready to sell, and others
scattered in-between. A common practice is to value all plants, whether just
started or almost finished at 50 percent of their wholesale price if finished.
However, some nursery operators use other methods. For this report, the values
received from the nursery operators were the values used. Land included in
owned capital investment was valued at the original purchase price. While this
may not represent the investment of a nursery operator if he or she were to buy
the land In 1986, it does represent the investment actually involved in the
operation.
The data from individual nurseries are averaged and presented in tablular
form. The tables present average values for all 35 nurseries, for the eleven
"largest" nurseries, and for the twelve "smallest" nurseries. The largest nur-
series had plant sales valued at $500,000 or more. The smallest nurseries had
less than $200,000.









DEFINITIONS


In general, .the terms used in this report are thought to be self explana-
tory. However, experiences of the past have shown that some of the terms used
here are not always as familiar as they might be. They are defined as follows,
and again later where they are used:


Value of own plants sold: the value of total plant sales minus the cost of
plants purchased for immediate resale. The cost of plants purchased for grow-
ing-on are not deducted.

Fulltime equivalent employee: the equivalent of one person paid for 2080
hours a year (40 hours a week for 52 weeks a year including vacation time, if
any). The most common method for obtaining the number of fulltime employees
for this report was to divide the total annual payroll hours for the nursery by
2080, and then add on the number of family and management people not paid on an
hourly basis.

Capital owned: the current value (cost after adjusting for depreciation
taken in prior years) of capital assets, or current investment in the nursery
operation. Related debt is not deducted in this determination of current value
of capital owned.

Capital managed: the sum of capital owned plus the value of additional
capital items used and under the control of the manager. Rented land and
leased buildings, equipment, etc., would be added to capital owned to obtain
the value of capital managed in the nursery operation.


Annual turnover of capital:
value of own plants sold by the
is annual plant sales stated in


the percentage that results from dividing
value of capital (either owned or managed).
terms of percent of the capital involved.


Total gain: the sum of plant sales, changes in plant and supply invento-
ries, and miscellaneous cash income. It represents the total effect of the
year's operation, be it in the form of cash received or in the form of change
in values of inventories.


Net nursery income: the net effect of the year's
all cash costs (except operator's salary), and all
interest on capital) are subtracted from total gain.
for the time and managerial skills of the operator,
capital invested in the operation.


operation. To obtain it,
non-cash costs (except
The result is the return
and for the use of the


Return to capital: the portion of net nursery income that is left
subtracting the salary or time value of the operator. It is what the
capital earned.


after
owned


Rate of return on capital: return to capital divided by the value of owned
capital. It is the rate earned on the capital invested.









DATA AND RESULTS


The data in the first 11 tables present various size and efficiency mea-
sures. Data in Tables 12 through 15 relate to the profitability of nurseries.
In the first five tables, more than one measure of efficiency could be used.
The first item in each table has traditionally been presented as 'The one best
measure." It is followed by other useful measures of performance. In the
tables throughout the manuscript, arithmetic inconsistencies from rounding may
be noted.


Size of Business(Table 1)


Data on size of business in Table 1 are basic information. When combined
with cost data in Table 6, they provide the nursery operator most of the data
required for developing the remaining tables in this report.
For size of business, the one best measure selected was "Value of own plants
sold" (Table 1 item A). In other words, this is income from the sale of the
plants grown in the nursery. This averaged $487,548 for the 35 nurseries. For
the eleven largest nurseries, it was $1,163,102 or two and a third times the
average. The smallest ones had $100,719, or about one fifth of the average.
Adjusting sales for change in value of plant inventory (Table 1 item B) did not
alter materially these relationships.
Total bed and bench space (Table 1C) averaged 106,299 square feet for the 35
nurseries. For the eleven largest nurseries, it was 221,069 square feet, or
twice the average. The twelve smallest nurseries had 27,479 square feet, or
about a quarter of the average.
Capital owned (Table 1P) averaged $414,379 for the 35 nurseries. For the
eleven largest nurseries, it was $867,142, or twice the average. The twelve
smallest nurseries had $120,119 or 29 percent of the average.
Capital managed (Table lX) averaged $484,955 or 17 percent more than the
capital owned by the nursery operators. This difference was primarily in the
value buildings and land. For the eleven largest nurseries, it was $1,067,188,
or 23 percent more than they owned. The twelve smallest nurseries managed nine
percent more than the capital owned, or $137,011. For these groups, the
difference was also in the value of buildings and land rented.






Table 1.--Size of business,
Florida, 1986.


35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in Central


Item Unit Average Average Average Your
all 35 11 largest 12 smallest nursery
The one best measure
A Value of own plants sold(a) $ 487,548 1,163,102 100,719
Other useful indicators of size


Value of own plants sold
B adjusted for change in .
plant inventory value

C Total bed & bench space.

D Propagating & finishing
bed S bench space. .

E Stock plant bed &
bench space. . .

F Total nursery area .
G Total nursery area .

H Average fulltime
equivalent employees(b).

Capital owned(c) in:
I Growing plants .. .....
J Buildings, fences, wells
K Machinery & equipment. ..
L Land . . .
M Supplies . . .
N Accounts receivable .
0 Cash/checkbook balance .
P Total owned capital .

-Capital managed(d) In:
Q Growing plants . .
R Buildings, fences, wells .
S Machinery & equipment. ..
T Land . . .
U Supplies . . .
V Accounts receivable .
W Cash/checkbook balance .
X Total managed capital .


$ 504,829 1,188,272 104,707


sq ft 106,299


sq ft 90,341


sq ft

sq ft
acres


number


15,958

167,982
3.86


18.10


167,274
109,279
19,114
26,356
20,966
60,516
10,874
414,379


167,273
152,690
20,274
52,362
20,966
60,516
10,874
484,955


221,069


190,498


30,571

295,327
6.78


46.31


358,015
194,943
37,710
33,332
59,633
168,029
15,481
867,142


358,015
335,948
39,705
90,378
59,633
168,029
15,481
1,067,188


27,479


24,970


2,509

38,279
0.88


3.86


42,881
40,9P
6,02
17,14
3,51L
6,356
3,212
120,119


42,881
41,758
6,639
33,547
3,518
6,356
3,212
137,911


(a) Value of own plants sold--is the value of total plant sales minus the
cost of plants purchased for immediate resale. The cost of plant purchased for
growing-on is not deducted.
(b) Fulltime equivalent employee--is the equivalent of one person paid 2080
hours (40 hours a week for 52 weeks a year including paid vacation time, if any)
(c) Capital owned--is the current value (original cost less depreciation
taken) of capital assets, or current investment in the nursery operation. Re-
lated debt is not deducted in this determination of the value of capital owned.
(d) Capital managed--is the sum of capital owned plus the value of addition-
al capital items used and under the control of the manager (e.g., rented land).









Rates of Production (Table 2)


"Value of own plants sold per square foot of total bed and bench space"
(Table 1 item A divided by item C) is the traditional rate of production measure
used among nurseries. The average value for the 35 nurseries was $4.59. For
the eleven largest nurseries, it was $5.26, or about 15 percent more than the
average. The five smallest nurseries had 3.67, or over three quarters of the
average sales per square foot of bed and bench space. When sales were adjusted
for change in inventory value (Table 1 item B divided by item C), the
relationship remained practically the same.
Sales per square foot of propagating and finishing space (Table 1A divided
by 1D) is a more accurate indicator of growing efficiency. Output from stock
plant areas may reduce costs, but pay no bills unless cuttings are sold. It is
the plants grown on the propagating and finishing space that pay the bills for
the entire nursery operation. This amounted to $5.40 per square foot for the 35
nurseries. For the eleven largest nurseries, it was $6.11, or 13 percent
greater than the average. The twelve smallest nurseries had $4.03 which was
three quarters of the average.


"Table 2.--Rates of production, 35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in Central
Florida, 1986.
= -------- ---==-----------------==- = --=I
Item Unit Average Average Average Your
all 35 11 largest 12 smallest nursery
The one best measure
Value of own plants sold per
sq ft of total bed & bench
space - (Table 1A/1C) $ 4.59 5.26 3.67
Other useful indicators
Value of own plants sold per
sq ft adjusted for inventory
change - (Table 1B/1C) $ 4.75 5.38 3.81

Value of own plants sold per
sq ft of propagating & fin-
ishing space (Table 1A/1D) $ 5.40 6.11 4.02
--- adjusted for inventory
change - (Table 1B/1D) $ 5.59 6.24 4.19

Value of own plants sold per
acre - (Table 1A/1G) $ 126,428 171,555 114,614
--- adjusted for inventory
change - (Table IB/1G) $ 130,909 175,267 119,151

IPPI--=I --- ------le~=P -L~~I =======-








Labor Efficiency (Table 3)


"Value of own plants sold per employee" (Table 1A divided by 1H) was
selected as the one best measure of labor efficiency. This averaged $26,939 per
employee for the 35 nurseries. For the eleven largest nurseries, sales averaged
$25,117, or seven percent less than the average. The twelve smallest nurseries
had $26,103 in sales per employee, or 97 percent of the average. Adjusting for
change in plant inventory value (Table 1B divided by 1H) slightly increased the
average for all 35 nurseries to $27,895. For the eleven largest nurseries, this
increased their sales per person to $25,661. The smallest nurseries were up to
$27,136 per person.
Total bed and bench space per employee (Table 1C divided by 1H) averaged
5,874 square feet. For the eleven largest nurseries, it was 4,774 square feet,
or 19 percent less than the average. The twelve smallest nurseries had 7,122
square feet per person, or 21 percent above the average.
Propagating and finishing space per person (Table 1D divided by 1H) averaged
4,992 square feet per employee. For the eleven largest nurseries it was 18
percent lower at 4,114 square feet. The smallest nurseries had 39 percent more,
at 6,471 square feet.


Table 3.--Labor efficiency, 35 wholesale foliage plant
Florida, 1986.


nurseries in Central


Item Unit Average Average Average Your
all 35 11 largest 12 smallest nursery
The one best measure
Value of own plants sold per
employee (Table 1A/1H) $ 26,939 25,117 26,103
Other useful indicators
Value of own plants sold per
employee adjusted for change
in inventory (Table 1B/1H) $ 27,895 25,661 27,136

Total bed 6 bench space per
employee (Table 1C/1H) sq ft 5,874 4,774 7,122

Propagating S finishing space
per employee (Table 1D/1H) sq ft 4,992 4,114 6,471

Total nursery area per
employee (Table 1F/1H) sq ft 9,282 6,378 9,921


I '












The Use of Space (Table 4)


The one measure selected as best for measuring the intensity of space use
was "Annual turnover of plant inventory value" (Table 1A divided by 11). This
indicates the number of times that funds tied up in plant inventory were repre-
sented by sales during the year. The reliability of this number depends upon
the care and accuracy with which plant inventory records are kept. Some nursery
operators in the program keep careful inventories of plant numbers, while others
tend to approximate their figures. But the idea is deemed valid, and should be
especially useful to those who compare their figures with their own data of the
previous year. In this case, the nursery operator has first hand knowledge of
the nature and the dependability of the comparison.
Annual turnover of plant inventory value in the 35 nurseries averaged 291
percent. This means that annual plant sales amounted to almost three times the
value of plants in inventory. For the eleven largest nurseries, turnover was
325 percent. Thus, their annual plant sales were 3.25 times the value of plants
in inventory. The twelve smallest nurseries had a much lower turnover rate, 235
percent.
Vacant bed and bench space is a measure of efficiency of space use. Gener-
ally, reducing the percent of space vacant on the average is desirable. How-
ever, some vacancy is inevitable between the time a plant is removed for sale
and the time another is put in its place to start growing. The average amount
of vacant space during the year divided by total bed and bench space (Table 1C)
shows the average percent of vacant space. This was 10.86 percent for the 35
nurseries. For the largest ones, it was 11.39 percent. The smallest nurseries
had 9.20 percent.
Other useful indicators to study are percent of total nursery area including
buildings and roadways that is bed and bench space, and the division of bed and
bench space between propagating and finishing space and stock plant area. Other
things being equal, the higher the percentage of total nursery area devoted to
bed and bench space, and the higher the percentage of bed and bench space used
for propagating and finishing rather than stock plants, the better. However,
other things are seldom equal, such as the cost of raising rather than buying
cuttings, and availability of quality material when needed.










The 35 nurseries averaged 106,299 square feet of bed and bench space, which
was 63.28 percent of their total nursery area. The eleven largest nurseries
averaged 74.86 percent of their total area in bed and bench space, while the
twelve smallest nurseries utilized 71.79 percent of their total nursery area as
bed and bench space.
Propagating and finishing area averaged 90,341 square feet for the 35 nur-
series. This was 84.99 percent of the total bed and bench space (Table 1D
divided by IC). For the eleven largest nurseries, it was 190,498 square feet,
or twice the average. This represented 86.17 percent of the total bed and bench
space. The twelve smallest nurseries had 24,970 square feet for propagating and
finishing, which was only 28 percent of the average. However, this space
represented 90.87 percent of their total bed and bench space. Thus, the
smallest nurseries devoted a slightly greater proportion of their growing area
to plants for sale.
The remaining bed and bench space was devoted to stock plants. Average for
this purpose was 15,958 square feet, or 15.11 percent of the bed and bench
space. Both largest nurseries and smallest nurseries had a smaller percentage
of bed and bench space in stock plants (13.83 and 9.13 percent respectively).
Thus, the middle third of the nurseries had a larger percentage of bed and bench
space devoted to stock plants than either the largest or smallest nurseries.

Table 4.--The use of space, 35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in Central
Florida, 1986.

Item Unit Average Average Average Your
all 35 11 largest 12 smallest nursery
Intensity of space use
Annual turnover of plant in-
ventory value (Table 1A/11) % 291 325 235
Efficiency of space use
Vacant bed & bench space sq ft 11,543 25,180 2,527
- (divided by Table 1C) % 10.86 11.39 9.20
Other useful indicators
Total nursery area (Table 1F) sq ft 167,982 295,327 38,279
Total bed & bench space sq ft 106,299 221,069 27,479
- - (Table 1C/1F) % 63.28 74.86 71.79

Propagating & finishing bed sq ft 90,341 190,498 24,970
6 bench space (Table 1D/1C) % 84.99 86.17 90.87

Stock plant bed & bench space sq ft 15,958 30,571 2,509
---- (Table 1E/1C) % 15.01 13.83 9.13
P~le--~.~.- P=P__- - ==r-=~---D









Efficiency in Use of Capital (Table 5)


A number of possibilities exist for measuring efficiency in the use of
capital. The one selected as the best single indicator was "Annual turnover of
owned capital value." This is the percentage that results from dividing the
value of own plants sold by the value of capital owned (Table 1A divided by 1P).
Annual turnover averaged 117.7 percent for the 35 nurseries. This means that
sales for the year equaled about one and a sixth times the capital invested.
For the eleven largest nurseries, it was 134.1, which was around a 14 percent
faster turnover rate than the average. The twelve smallest nurseries had 83.8,
which was 71 percent of the average turnover rate.
Managed capital turnover averaged 100.5 percent for the 35 nurseries. Thus,
there was enough additional capital being managed to reduce the turnover rate by
17 points (14 percent). For the eleven largest nurseries, it was 109.0 meaning
there was enough additional capital involved in the operation to reduce the
turnover rate by 25.1 points. The twelve smallest nurseries managed a small
amount of additional capital, reducing turnover by only 10.5 points.
Capital invested per employee (Table 1P divided by 1H) averaged $22,897 for
the 35 nurseries. For the eleven largest nurseries, it was $18,726, or about 18
percent less than the average. The twelve smallest nurseries had $31,131 which
was 36 percent above the average.
Average capital investment per acre of nursery area (Table 1P divided by 1G)
was $107,454 for the 35 nurseries. For the eleven largest nurseries, it was
$127,901, or 19 percent higher than the average. The twelve smallest nurseries
had also had a higher figure, 136,690, or 27 percent above the average. Calcu-
lations for managed capital showed the largest nurseries managing about 25
percent more than the average per acre, and the smallest nurseries having about
25 percent more than the average.
Growing plants represented 34.49 percent of the capital managed by the 35
nurseries. For the largest nurseries, it was 33.55 percent. The smallest nur-
series had 31.09 percent of their capital tied up in plants.
Buildings and installations averaged 31.49 percent of the total. Largest
nurseries had about the same, 31.48 percent. Smallest ones had 30.28 percent.
Machinery and equipment took between 3.72 and 4.81 percent of the capital.
Land required 10.80 percent of the capital on average. However, largest
nurseries used only 8.47 percent of their capital for land while smallest










nurseries averaged nearly 24.33 percent. Accounts receivable accounted for
12.48 percent of all capital managed. Largest nurseries required 15.75 percent
of the total. Smallest ones only had 4.61 percent of their capital utilized
this way.


Table 5.--Efficiency in use of capital, 35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in
Central Florida, 1986.

Item Unit Average Average Average Your
all 35 11 largest 12 smallest nursery
The one best measure
Annual turnover(e) of owned
Capital value (Table 1A/1P) % 117.7 134.1 83.8
Other useful indicators
Annual turnover(e) of managed
capital value (Table 1A/1X) % 100.5 109.0 73.0

Per employee:
Capital owned (Table 1P/1H) $ 22,897 18,726 31,131
Capital managed (Table 1X/1H) $ 26,797 23,046 35,742

Per acre:
Capital owned (Table 1P/1G) $ 107,454 127,901 136,690
Capital managed (Table 1X/1G) $ 125,756 157,407 156,937

Managed capital per person in:
Plants- - (Table 1Q/1H) $ 9,243 7,731 11,113
Buildings (Table 1R/1H) $ 8,437 7,255 10,822
Mach & equip- (Table 1S/1H) $ 1,120 857 1,721
Land- - (Table 1T/1H) $ 2,893 1,952 8,694
A/R - (Table 1V/1H) $ 1,159 1,288 912

Managed capital per acre in:
Plants- - (Table 1Q/1G) $ 43,376 52,806 48,797
Buildings (Table 1R/1G) $ 39,595 49,551 47,519
Mach & equip- (Table 1S/1G) $ 5,257 5,856 7,555
Land- - (Table 1T/1G) $ 13,578 13,331 33,175
A/R - (Table 1V/1G) $ 5,437 8,796 4,004

Percent of capital managed in:
Plants- - (Table 1Q/1X) % 34.49 33.55 31.09
Buildings (Table 1R/IX) % 31.49 31.48 30.28
Mach & equip- (Table 1S/1X) % 4.18 3.72 4.81
Land- - (Table 1T/1X) % 10.80 8.47 24.33
Supplies- (Table 1U/IX) % 4.32 5.59 2.55
A/R - (Table 1V/1X) % 12.48 15.75 4.61
Cash- - (Table 1W/1X) % 2.24 1.45 2.33
Total nursery- (Table 1X/1X) % 100.00 100.00 100.00 _


(e) Annual turnover of capital value--the percent resulting from dividing
the value of own plants sold by the value of capital (Table 1A/1P or lX).









Dollar Costs by Expense Category (Table 6)


Dollar costs by expense category were obtained from the annual profit and
loss statement or tax records of the participating nurseries. The cash cost
categories were grouped into wages and salaries, production supplies, other
production costs, and administrative and overhead expense. Dollar costs should
be useful for comparing the relative magnitude of the various cost items, and as
a guide to persons interested in Central Florida foliage nurseries as an
investment, either as buyers, sellers or lenders.
Salaries and Wages
The salary and wage group includes operator salary or time value. Average
was $185,561. Largest nurseries had $445,856, two and a third times the
average. The smallest nurseries had $39,099, or 21 percent of the average.
Production Supplies
Production supplies include the group starting with "plants and seeds"
through "other production supplies." They averaged $179,232 for the 35 nurser-
ies. For the largest nurseries, they were $439,465, or 2.4 times the average.
The smallest nurseries had $38,804, or 22 percent of the average.
Other Production Costs
Other production costs include "facility repairs" and "equipment operating
costs." They averaged $22,100. Largest nurseries had $45,219, or twice the
average. Smallest nurseries had $5,764, a quarter of the average.
Administrative and Overhead
Administrative and overhead expenses usually cannot be assigned to any par-
ticular crop or growing activity, yet must be covered in order to remain in
business. They include the group starting with "travel and entertainment"
through "other cash expenses." They averaged $53,086 for the 35 nurseries. For
the largest nurseries, they were $118,131, 2.2 times the average. The smallest
nurseries had $14,859, or one quarter of the average.
Total Cash Costs
Total cash costs averaged $439,980. Larger nurseries had $1,048,671, 2.4
times average. Smaller ones had $96,526, or a fifth of the average.
Non-Cash Costs
Non-cash costs include depreciation allowances, decreases in the supply in-
ventory (using supplies purchased during a previous time period), and an inter-
est charge for the use of the capital invested in the nursery. These costs









For the largest nurseries, they were $155,343, twice the


average. The smallest ones had $26,879, or 34 percent of the average.
Total All Costs
Total costs averaged $518,300. Larger nurseries averaged $1,204,014, or 2.3
times the average. Smaller ones had $125,404 (24 percent of average).

Table 6.--Dollar costs by expense category, 35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries
in Central Florida, 1986.

Item Average Average Average Your
all 35 11 largest 12 smallest nursery
- - Dollars - - -


Cash Costs
Operator's salary . .
Other wages and salaries .
Salaries & wages . .

Plants & seeds to grow on .
Pots/growing containers . .
Fuel for production heat .
Peat/soil/shavings, etc . .
Fertilizer/lime . . .
Pesticides/other chemicals .
Packing boxes/supplies ..
Other production supplies .
Production supplies .. .

Facility repairs/maintenance .
Equipment operating costs .
Other production costs .

Travel/trade shows . .
Insurance . . .
Telephone . . .
Electricity . . .
Taxes/licenses/bonds . .
Advertising . . .
Rent: land and/or buildings .
Other cash expenses . .
Administrative & overhead .
TOTAL CASH COSTS . .

Non-Cash Costs
Depreciation: mach/equipment .
Depreciation: bldgs/fences/wells.
Inventory decrease in supplies. .
Interest on capital, 12% .
NON-CASH COSTS . .

TOTAL ALL COSTS . .


31,790
153,770
185,561

87,046
28,241
11,153
10,391
4,880
7,186
20,857
9,479
179,232

14,793
7,308
22,100

2,961
9,966
5,439
7,082
4,729
2,626
4,475
15,809
53,086
439,980


7,921
20,673
0
49,725
78,320

518,300


53,346
392,509
445,856

215,370
69,240
25,343
21,912
10,440
16,611
55,294
25,255
439,465

32,982
12,237
45,219

6,944
20,399
11,828
14,696
11,504
6,561
11,603
34,596
118,131
1,048,671


16,236
34,683
367
104,057
155,343

1,204,014


17,883
21,215
39,099

17,159
6,094
3,172
4,104
1,417
1,417
3,664
1,798
38,804

3,026
2,738
5,764

781
3,246
2,469
2,185
1,224
271
407
4,276
14.859
98,526


3,415
8,707
343
14 414
26,879

125,405


P= -~=,.==~=~eDISI ==II


averaged $78,320.


~==~~s=r









Percent of Total Costs by Expense Category (Table 7)


While expenditures in the form of dollars show the magnitude of expenses for
various cost categories, they are not very helpful for comparing cost
relationships between different sizes of nurseries. But costs as a percent of
total costs are useful for this purpose. These are obtained by dividing each of
the dollar expense items in Table 6 by the corresponding "Total all costs"
figure at the bottom of the table.
Salaries and Wages
Salaries and wages (includes operator) averaged 35.80 percent of all costs.
For the eleven largest nurseries, they were about the same, 37.03 percent. For
the twelve smallest nurseries they were slightly lower, 32.18 percent.
Production Supplies
Production supplies ("plants" through "other production supplies") averaged
34.58 percent for the 35 nurseries. For the largest nurseries, they were 36.50
percent, or 5.6 percent more than the average. The smallest nurseries averaged
30.94 percent of total costs, or ten percent below the average.
Other Production Costs
Other production costs ("facility repairs" and "equipment operating costs")
averaged 4.26 percent for the 35 nurseries. For the eleven largest nurseries,
they were 3.76 percent. The smallest nurseries averaged 4.60 percent.
Administrative and Overhead
These costs ("travel" through "other cash expense") averaged 10.24 percent
for the 35 nurseries. For the eleven largest ones, they were 9.81 percent. The
smallest nurseries had 11.85 percent.
Total Cash Costs
Total cash costs represented 84.89 percent of all costs and allowances for
the 35 nurseries. For the largest ones, it was 87.10 percent, or 2.6 percent
above average. The smallest ones had 78.57 percent, 7.4 percent less than the
average in cash costs.
Non-Cash Costs
Non-cash costs ("depreciation" through "interest on capital") are the addi-
tional costs that need to be covered eventually, though not necessarily with
cash during this accounting period. They averaged 15.11 percent of total costs
for the 35 nurseries. For the eleven largest ones, they averaged 12.90 percent,










or 15 percent less than the average. Hence, the largest nurseries had a higher
percent of their total operating expense in the form of cash costs. The twelve
smallest nurseries had 21.43 percent of their total as non-cash costs. This was
1.4 times the average. Differences were considerable in the percentages of
total costs represented by depreciation and interest on capital.


Table 7.--Percent of total costs by expense category, 35 wholesale foliage plant
nurseries in Central Florida, 1986.

Item Average Average Average Your
all 35 11 largest 12 smallest nursery
-- D -rrnn---------


Cash Costs
Operator's salary . .
Other wages/salaries ..
Salaries & wages . .


Plants & seeds to grow on . .
Pots/growing containers . .
Fuel for production heat . .
Peat/soil/shavings, etc . .
Fertilizer/lime . . .
Pesticides/other chemicals .
Packing boxes/supplies . .
%Other production supplies . .
Production supplies . ..

Facility repairs/maintenance .
Equipment operating costs . .
Other production costs .

Travel/trade shows . .
Insurance . . . .
Telephone . . . .
Electricity . . .
Taxes/licenses/bonds . .
Advertising . . .
Rent: land and/or buildings .
Other cash expenses . .
Administrative & overhead .
TOTAL CASH COSTS . .

Non-Cash Costs
Depreciation: mach/equipment .
Depreciation: bldgs/fences/wells .
Inventory decrease in supplies. ..
Interest on capital, 12% . .
NON-CASH COSTS . .

TOTAL ALL COSTS . .


6.13
29.67
35.80

16.79
5.45
2.15
2.00
0.94
1.39
4.02
1.83
34.58

2.85
1.41
4.26

0.57
1.92
1.05
1.37
0.92
0.51
0.86
3.05
10.24
84.89


1.53
3.99
0.00
9.59
15.11

100.00


4.43
32.60
37.03

17.89
5.75
2.10
1.82
0.87
1.38
4.59
2.10
36.50

2.74
1.02
3.76

0.58
1.69
0.98
1.22
0.96
0.54
0.96
2.87
9.81
87.10


1.35
2.88
0.03
8.64
12.90

100.00


14.26
16.92
31.18

13.68
4.86
2.58
3.27
1.11
1.13
2.92
1.43
30.94

2.41
2.18
4.60

0.62
2.59
1.97
1.74
1.98
0.22
0.32
3.41
11.85
78.57


2.72
6.94
0.27
11.49
21.43

100.00


== =--= = =


P.~P P~Si=~tP-- D~tPP~~11tII=I===


I ~I CSIIL









Costs Per Square Foot of Total Bed and Bench Space (Table 8)


While expenses as a percent of total costs facilitate comparing operating
statements, they do not allow easy comparison of relative growing costs between
nurseries. But costs per square foot do. The traditional basis for comparison
is costs per square foot of total bed and bench space. These were obtained by
dividing each of the dollar cost figures in Table 6 by the appropriate area in
production figure from Table 1C, "Total bed and bench space."
Salary and Wages
Salaries and wages (includes operator) per square foot amounted to 174.6
cents ($1.74) in the 35 nurseries. For the eleven largest ones, they averaged
201.7 cents, or about 27 cents above the average. The smallest nurseries had
142.3 cents, or about 32 cents less than the average.
Production Supplies
Production supplies ("plants and seeds" through "other production supplies")
averaged 168.6 cents ($1.69) per square foot. For the largest nurseries, they
were 198.8 cents, or 30 cents above the average. The smallest ones had 141.2
cents, or 27 cents below the average.
Other Production Costs
Other production costs ("facility repairs" and "equipment operation") aver-
aged 20.8 cents. For the largest nurseries, they were 20.4 cents. The twelve
smallest nurseries had 21.0 cents, or about the average.
Administrative and Overhead
These costs ("travel" through "other cash expenses") averaged 49.9 cents.
For the largest nurseries, they were 53.4 cents, or 3.5 cents higher. The
twelve smallest nurseries had lower overhead costs, 54.1 cents, or four cents
over the average.
Total Cash Costs
Total cash costs in the 35 nurseries averaged 413.9 cents ($4.14) per square
foot of total bed and bench space. For the eleven largest nurseries, they were
474.4 cents, up by over 60 cents. The twelve smallest nurseries had 358.6
cents, or 55 cents below the average.
Non-Cash Costs
Non-cash costs ("depreciation" through "interest on capital") averaged 73.7
cents for the 35 nurseries. The largest nurseries had 70.3 cents. The smallest
nurseries had 97.8 cents, or 24 cents above the average.








Total All Costs
Total costs per square foot of total bed and bench space averaged $4.87.
For the largest nurseries, they were $5.45, or 58 cents above the average. The
smallest ones had $4.56, or 31 cents below the average.

Table 8.--Costs per square foot of total bed & bench space, 35 wholesale foliage
plant nurseries in Central Florida, 1986.

Item Average Average Average Your
all 35 11 largest 12 smallest nursery
- - Cents - - -


Cash Costs
Operator's salary . . .
Other wages/salaries . .
Salaries & wages . .

Plants & seeds to grow on . .
Pots/growing containers . .
Fuel for production heat . .
Peat/soil/shavings, etc . .
Fertilizer/lime . . .
Pesticides/other chemicals .
Packing boxes/supplies . .
Other production supplies . .
Production supplies . .

Facility repairs/maintenance .
Equipment operating costs ....
Other production costs ..

Travel/trade shows . .
Insurance . . . .
Telephone . . . .
Electricity .. . . .
Taxes/licenses/bonds . .
Advertising . . .
Rent: land and/or buildings .
Other cash expenses . .
Administrative & overhead .
TOTAL CASH COSTS . .

Non-Cash Costs
Depreciation: mach & equip .
Depreciation: bldgs, fences, wells.
Inventory decrease in supplies. .
Interest on capital, 12% ..
NON-CASH COSTS . .

TOTAL ALL COSTS . .


29.9
144.7
174.6

81.9
26.6
10.5
9.8
4.6
6.8
19.6
8.9
168.6

13.9
6.9
20.8

2.8
9.4
5.1
6.7
4.4
2.5
4.2
14.9
49.9
413.9


7.4
19.5
0.0
46.8
73.7

487.6


24.1
177.6
201.7

97.4
31.3
11.5
9.9
4.7
7.5
25.0
11.4
198.8

14.9
5.5
20.4

3.1
9.2
5.4
6.6
5.2
3.0
5.2
15.6
53.4
474.4


7.3
15.7
0.2
47.1
70.3

544.6


65.1
77.2
142.3

62.4
22.2
11.5
14.9
5.1
5.1
13.3
6.5
141.2

11.0
10.0
21.0

2.8
10.8
9.0
8.0
4.5
1.0
1.5
15.6
54.1
358.6


12.4
31.4
1.2
52.5
97.8

456.4


~lltPEIIE----19S~~PPr'P=ILES--PP~~rS===L









Costs Per Square Foot of Propagating and Finishing Space (Table 9)


Costs per square foot of total bed and bench space is the traditional basis
for comparisons between nurseries. However, costs per square foot of propaga-
ting and finishing space are more appropriate for estimating individual plant
growing costs, or for comparing growing cost efficiency between nurseries.
these costs were obtained by dividing dollar cost in Table 6 by the plant pro-
duction area from Table 1D, "Propagating and finishing bed and bench space."
Salary and Wages
Salaries and wages (includes operator) per square foot amounted to 205.4
cents ($2.05) in the 35 nurseries. For the eleven largest ones, they averaged
234.0 cents, or about 29 cents above the average. The smallest nurseries had
156.6 cents, or almost 49 cents less than the average.
Production Supplies
Production supplies ("plants and seeds" through "other production supplies")
averaged 198.4 cents ($1.98) per square foot. For the largest nurseries, they
were 230.7 cents, or 32 cents above the average. The smallest ones had 155.4
cents, or 43 cents below the average.
Other Production Costs
Other production costs ("facility repairs" and "equipment operation") aver-
aged 24.5 cents. For the largest nurseries, they were 23.7 cents. The twelve
smallest nurseries had 23.1 cents, or 1.4 cents below the average.
Administrative and Overhead
These costs ("travel" through "other cash expenses") averaged 58.8 cents.
For the largest nurseries, they were 62.0 cents, or 3.2 cents higher. The
twelve smallest nurseries had slightly lower overhead costs, 59.5 cents, or a
little over the average.
Total Cash Costs
Total cash costs in the 35 nurseries averaged 487.0 cents ($4.87) per square
foot of propagating and finishing space. For the eleven largest nurseries, they
were 550.5 cents, up by more than 63 cents. The twelve smallest nurseries had
394.6 cents, or 92 cents below the average.
Non-Cash Costs
Non-cash costs ("depreciation" through "interest on capital") averaged 86.7
cents for the 35 nurseries. The largest nurseries had 81.6 cents. Smallest
nurseries had 107.6 cents, or about 21 cents above average.






19


Total All Costs
Total costs per square foot of propagating and finishing space averaged
$5.74. For the largest nurseries, they were $6.32, or 58 cents above the
average. The smallest ones had $5.02 or 71.5 cents below the average.


Table 9.--Costs per square foot of propagating
nurseries in Central Florida, 1986.


and finishing space, 35 wholesale


Item Average Average Average Your
all 35 11 largest 12 smallest nursery
- - Cents - - -


Cash Costs
Operator's salary . .
Other wages/salaries .
Salaries & wages . .

Plants & seeds to grow on .
Pots/growing containers .
Fuel for production heat .
Peat/soil/shavings, etc .
Fertilizer/lime . .
Pesticides/other chemicals
Packing boxes/supplies .
Other production supplies .
Production supplies .

Facility repairs/maintenance
Equipment operating costs .
Other production costs .

Travel/trade shows . .
Insurance . . .
Telephone . . .
Electricity . . .
Taxes/licenses/bonds ..
Advertising . . .
Rent: land and/or buildings .
Other cash expenses . .
Administrative & overhead .
TOTAL CASH COSTS ..


35.2
170.2
205.4

96.4
31.3
12.3
11.5
5.4
8.0
23.1
10.5
198.4

16.4
8.1
24.5

3.3
11.0
6.0
7.8
5.2
2.9
5.0
17.5
58.8
487.0


Non-Cash Costs
Depreciation: mach/equipment .. 8.8
Depreciation: bldgs/fences/wells 22.9
Inventory decrease in supplies. .. 0.0
Interest on capital, 12% 55.0
NON-CASH COSTS . . 86.7

TOTAL ALL COSTS . .. 573.7


28.0
206.0
234.0

113.1
36.4
13.3
11.5
5.5
8.7
29.0
13.3
230.7

17.3
6.4
23.7

3.6
10.7
6.2
7.7
6.0
3.4
6.1
18.2
62.0
550.5


8.5
18.2
0.2
54.6
81.6

632.0


71.6
85.0
156.6

68.7
24.4
12.7
16.4
5.6
5.7
14.7
7.2
155.4

12.1
11.0
23.1

3.1
13.0
9.9
8.8
4.9
1.1
1.6
17.1
59.5
394.6


13.7
34.9
1.4
57.7
107.6

502.2


= == = ==









Costs Per Dollar of Sales Adjusted for Inventory Change (Table 10)


Costs per square foot of growing area are important for comparing relative
costs between nurseries, and for estimating individual plant growing costs.
However, they do not indicate the profit potential of a nursery operation as
well as do costs per dollar of sales. Adjusting sales for changes in inventory
value shows how the business is doing in total, not just cash-wise. These fig-
ures were developed by dividing the dollar costs shown in Table 6 by the appro-
priate figure from Table B1, "Value of own plants sold adjusted for change in
plant inventory value."
Salaries and Wages
Salaries and Wages (includes operator) averaged 36.8 cents per dollar of
sales after adjusting for changes in inventory. For the eleven largest
nurseries, they were 37.5 cents, three quarters of a cent above the average.
The smallest nurseries had 37.8 cents, a half a cent above the average.
Production Supplies
Production supplies ("plants and seeds" through "other production supplies")
averaged 35.5 cents. For the eleven largest nurseries, they were 37.0 cents, or
one and a half cents above the average. The smallest nurseries had one and
three quarters cents above the average, or 37.1 cents.
Other Production Supplies
Other production costs ("facility repairs" and "equipment operation)" aver-
aged 4.4 cents per dollar of adjusted sales. For the largest nurseries, they
were a half cent less, or 3.8 cents. The smallest had 5.5 cents.
Administrative and Overhead
These costs ("travel" through "other cash expense") amounted to 10.5 cents
per dollar of adjusted sales. For the eleven largest nurseries, they were 9.9
cents. The smallest nurseries had 14.2 cents.
Total Cash Costs
Total cash costs per dollar of adjusted sales averaged 87.2 cents. For the
largest nurseries, they were a cent more, or 88.2 cents. The smallest nur-
series had 94.1 cents, almost seven cents above the average.
Non-Cash Costs
Non-cash costs ("depreciation" through "interest on capital") averaged 15.5
cents. Largest nurseries had 13.1 cents, or 2.4 cents below average. The










smallest nurseries had much higher costs, 25.7 cents, or 10 cents over average.
Total All Costs
Total costs per dollar of adjusted sales averaged 102.7 cents. Largest
nurseries had 101.3 cents. Smallest ones had 119.8 cents, or a deficit of
almost 20 cents per dollar of sales adjusted for plant inventory change.

Table O1.--Costs per dollar of sales adjusted for change in plant inventory, 35
foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida, 1986.

Item Average Average Average Your
all 35 11 largest 12 smallest nursery
- - Cents - - -


Cash Costs
Operator's salary . .
Other wages/salaries .
Salaries & wages . .

Plants & seeds to grow on .
o Pots/growing containers .
Fuel for production heat .
Peat/soil/shavings, etc .
Fertilizer/lime . .
Pesticides/other chemicals
Packing boxes/supplies .
Other production supplies .
Production supplies .

Facility repairs/maintenance
Equipment operating costs .
Other production costs .

Travel/trade shows . .
Insurance . . .
Telephone . . .
Electricity . . .
Taxes/licenses/bonds .
Advertising . . .
Rent: land and/or buildings .
Other cash expenses . .
Administrative & overhead .
TOTAL CASH COSTS .


6.3
30.5
36.8

17.2
5.6
2.2
2.1
1.0
1.4
4.1
1.9
35.5

2.9
1.4
4.4

0.6
2.0
1.1
1.4
0.9
0.5
0.9
3.1
10.5
87.2


Non-Cash Costs
Depreciation: mach/equipment 1.6
Depreciation: bldgs/fences/wells 4.1
Inventory decrease in supplies. .. 0.0
Interest on capital, 12 . 9.8
NON-CASH COSTS . ... .15.5

TOTAL ALL COSTS . ... 102.7


4.5
33.0
37.5

18.1
5.8
2.1
1.8
0.9
1.4
4.6
2.1
37.0

2.8
1.0
3.8

0.6
1.7
1.0
1.2
1.0
0.6
1.0
2.9
9.9
88.2


1.4
2.9
0.0
8.8
13.1

101.3


17.1
20.3
37.3

16.4
5.8
3.0
3.9
1.3
1.4
3.5
1.7
37.1

2.9
2.6
5.5

0.8
3.1
2.4
2.1
1.2
0.3
0.4
4.1
14.2
94.1


3.3
8.3
0.3
13.8
25.7

119.8


= ~~=====


= ======r=====PD~PI=5=====--------------









Costs Per Dollar of Sales (Table 11)


While total business position is indicated by costs per dollar of sales
adjusted for changes in inventory value, bill paying ability depends upon costs
relative to cash received. These figures were developed by dividing the dollar
costs shown in Table 6 by the appropriate figure from Table 1A, "Value of own
plants sold."
Salaries and Wages
Salaries and wages (includes operator) amounted to 38.1 cents per dollar of
cash received. For the eleven largest nurseries, they were 38.3 cents, about
one cent less than the average. The smallest nurseries had 38.8 cents, or 0.7
cents over the average.
Production Supplies
Production supplies ("plants and seeds" through "other production supplies")
averaged 36.8 cents per dollar of cash sales. For the eleven largest nurseries,
they were 37.8 cents, or one cent greater than average. The smallest nurseries
had 38.5 cents, or almost two cents above average.
Other Production Costs
Other production costs ("facility repairs" and "equipment operation)" aver-
aged 4.5 cents per dollar of cash received. For the eleven largest nurseries,
they were 3.9 cents. Smallest ones had 5.7 cents, or a cent above average.
Administrative and Overhead
These costs ("travel" through "other cash expense") averaged 10.9 cents per
dollar of sales. For the eleven largest nurseries, they were 10.2 cents. The
smallest nurseries had 14.8 cents, or four cents above average.
Total Cash Costs
Total cash costs averaged 90.2 cents per dollar of cash received for all 35
nurseries. This means that they were able to meet current bills with slightly
less than 10 cents to spare per dollar of sales. For the largest nurseries,
they were the same, 90.2 cents. The smallest ones had 97.8 cents, almost eight
cents above the average.
Non-Cash Costs
These costs ("depreciation" through "interest on capital") averaged 16.1
cents per dollar of sales. For the eleven largest nurseries, they were 13.4
cents. The twelve smallest nurseries had much higher non-cash costs, 26.7 cents
per dollar of sales.








Total All Costs
Total all costs averaged 106.3 cents per dollar of cash sales. Largest
nurseries averaged 103.5 cents and smallest nurseries 124.5 cents. Hence, none
of the groups took in enough cash to cover all costs for the year.


Table 11.--Costs per dollar of sales (no adjustment for change in plant inven-
tory), 35 foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida, 1986.

Item Average Average Average Your
all 35 11 largest 12 smallest nursery
- - Cents - - -


Cash Costs
Operator's salary . .
Other wages/salaries .
Salaries & wages . .

Plants & seeds to grow on .
Pots/growing containers .
Fuel for production heat .
Peat/soil/shavings, etc .
Fertilizer/lime . .
Pesticides/other chemicals
Packing boxes/supplies .
Other production supplies .
Production supplies .

Facility repairs/maintenance
Equipment operating costs .
Other production costs .

Travel/trade shows . .
Insurance . .. .
Telephone . . .
Electricity . .
Taxes/licenses/bonds .
Advertising . . .
Rent: land and/or buildings .
Other cash expenses . .
Administrative & overhead .
TOTAL CASH COSTS .


6.5
31.5
38.1

17.8
5.8
2.3
2.1
1.0
1.5
4.3
1.9
36.8

3.0
1.5
4.5

0.6
2.0
1.1
1.4
1.0
0.5
0.9
3.2
10.9
90.2


Non-Cash Costs
Depreciation: mach/equipment 1.6
Depreciation: bldgs/fences/wells 4.2
Inventory decrease in supplies. .. 0.0
Interest on capital, 12% .. 10.2
NON-CASH COSTS . . 16.1

TOTAL ALL COSTS . ... 106.3


4.6
33.8
38.3

18.5
6.0
2.2
1.9
0.9
1.4
4.8
2.2
37.8

2.8
1.0
3.9

0.6
1.8
1.0
1.3
1.0
0.6
1.0
3.0
10.2
90.2


1.4
3.0
0.0
9.0
13.4

103.5


17.8
20.1
38.8

17.0
6.0
3.2
4.1
1.4
1.4
3.6
1.8
38.5

3.0
2.7
5.7

0.8
3.2
2.4
2.2
1.2
0.3
0.4
4.2
14.8
97.8


3.4
8.6
0.3
14.3
26.7

124.5


== = = ==


=- S- -~I=~IP F P==D==================== ---------










Income Summary (Table 12)

This section concentrates on developing net nursery income and allocating it
between the time and effort of the owner-operator and a return on the money
invested in the operation. After all is said and done, it is for a payment on
the time taken that a nursery operator works, and it is for a return to capital
that nursery operators and lending agencies invest funds in nursery operations.
Total Gain
Total gain refers to the total effect of the year's operation. It is the
sum of plant sales, changes in plant and supply inventory values, and miscella-
neous income. Miscellaneous income refers to income received from sources other
than plant sales. Included could be rent income, interest income, delivery
income, boxing charges, and income from the sale of fertilizer and supplies.
Total gain for the 35 nurseries averaged $487,548. Largest nurseries aver-
aged more than double that amount, or $1,163,102. Smallest nurseries had 21
percent of the average, or $100,719.
Net Nursery Income
Net nursery income is the total return for the year for the time and man-
agerial skills of the operator plus the capital invested in the operation. To
obtain it, all cash costs from Table 6 except the operator's salary, and all
non-cash allowances shown there except interest on capital, are subtracted from
total gain. The result is net nursery income, or income for all the time and
capital investment (including borrowed funds) supplied by the owner-operator.
For the 35 nurseries, it averaged $71,351. For the eleven largest
nurseries, it was $148,505, or over twice the average. Smallest nurseries had
$11,949, or about 17 percent of the average.
Return to Capital
From net nursery income is subtracted the salary or time value of the owner-
operator (Table 6) to obtain that part of net nursery income attributable to
capital. This is the earnings of the money invested in the nursery. Dividing
it by the value of capital invested gives the rate of return earned by the
investment. When the owner and operator are the same person, dividing net
nursery income between the operator and return to capital may not seem
important. But when the owners are outside investors, then accurate division is









important. In either case, rate of return is a common indicator for evaluating
an investment or for selecting between alternative investment alternatives.
Return to capital for the 35 nurseries amounted to $39,561, or a return of
9.55 percent. For the eleven largest nurseries, it was $95,158 for 10.97
percent or a 1.42 points greater than the average return on the capital
investment. The smallest nurseries averaged a loss of $5,934 for a 4.94 percent
negative return on the capital invested.



Table 12.--Income summary, 35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in Central
Florida, 1986.
--=3.P~=---:= -IP ~ r-- -=t=-P = i=-eIPI=
Item Unit Average Average Average Your
all 35 11 largest 12 smallest nursery
- - Dollars - - -
Value of own plants sold - $ 487,548 1,163,102 100,719
Plant inventory change --- $ 17,281 25,169 3,987
Supply inventory change- - $ 24 0 0
Miscellaneous cash income- $ 3,282 6,843 350
Total gain(f) -- ---- $ 508,135 1,195,115 105,057

Deduct cash costs less op salary $( 408,190) ( 995,325) ( 80,643)( )
Deduct non-cash costs less int $( 28,595) ( 51,285) ( 12465)( )
Total deductions- - $( 436,785) (1,046,610) ( 93,108)( )

Net nursery income(g)- - $ 71,351 148,505 11,949
Deduct op salary or time value $( 31,790) ( 53,346) ( 17,883)( )

Return to capital(h) -- --- $ 39,561 95,158 ( 5,934)
Rate of return to capital(i) % 9.55 10.97 ( 4.94)


(f) Total gain--the sum of plant sales, change in plant and supply inventor-
ies, and miscellaneous income. It represents the total effect of the year's
operation, be it in the form of cash or change in inventory value.

(g) Net nursery income--the net effect of the year's operation. To obtain
it, subtract all cash costs (except operator's salary), and all non-cash allow-
ances (except interest on capital) from total gain. The result is the return
for the time and managerial skills of the operator, and for the use of the capi-
tal invested in the operation.

(h) Return to capital--the portion of net income that is left after sub-
tracting the salary or time value of the operator. It is what the owned capital
earned.

(i) Rate of return to capital--return to capital divided by the value of
owned capital. It is the rate of return earned on the capital invested.









Balance Sheet (Table 13)


This section is a recent addition to the Florida Nursery Business Analysis
series. It was made possible by the provision of additional fiscal information
by the participants. These balance sheet figures represent the mid-year
financial situation of the firms. They were derived as an average of year-
beginning and year-end figures.
Current Assets
Current assets consist of cash, accounts receivable, and inventory values.
They are cash, or items deemed convertible to cash within a year's time. Cash
on hand includes funds in checking accounts, savings accounts, and money market
funds. Average cash on hand was $10,874. Largest nurseries had 42 percent more
($15,481). Smallest ones had 29 percent of the average ($3,212). Accounts
receivable are the uncollected funds due. Most of this is payments due for
plants sold. Generally, this figure should be minimized. Uncollected funds pay
no bills and earn no interest. They averaged $60,516. Largest nurseries had
more than twice this amount, or $168,029. The smallest nurseries had $6,356, or
about ten percent of the average. Inventory values are the investments in
growing plants and supplies presented previously in Table 1. They averaged
$188,240. Largest nurseries had $417,648, double the average. Smallest had 25
percent of the average ($46,399). Total current assets averaged $259,629. For
largest nurseries, they were $601,157, more than twice the average. Smallest
averaged $55,967, or one fifth the average.
Long Term Assets
Long term assets are investments in buildings, machinery and land that
normally would not be converted to cash within a year. Current values of
investments are the original cost less accumulated depreciation. Comparing
original cost with the value remaining after subtracting accumulated deprecia-
tion provides an idea of the degree to which capital assets have been depleted.
Original investments averaged $308,787. Subtracting accumulated depreciation of
$154,038 leaves a current value of $154,749 (half of original cost). Largest
nursery original cost was $595,577. Subtracting accumulated depreciation of
$329,592 gives a remaining value of $265,985 (44.7 percent of original cost).
Smallest nursery original investment was about a third of the average, or
$111,913. Subtracting accumulated depreciation of $47,762 makes the current
value $64,152 (57.3 percent of the original cost).









Total Assets
Total assets averaged $414,379. Largest nurseries had twice this amount
($867,142). Smallest nurseries had 29 percent of the average ($120,119).
Liabilities
Liabilities may be "current" (payable during the current year) or "long
term" (payable at some time after the current year). Current liabilities
averaged $23,811. Largest nurseries had over twice this amount ($56,298).
Smallest ones had 34 percent of average ($8,006). Long term liabilities may be
notes or mortgages. They averaged $122,615. Largest nurseries had 1.76 times
this amount ($216,636). Smallest ones had 58 percent of the industry average
($71,734). Total Liabilities represent that part of the nursery that belongs to
someone else. They averaged $146,426, or 35 percent of the assets. Largest

Table 13.--Balance Sheet, 35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in Central
Florida, 1986

Item Average Average Average Your
all 35 11 largest 12 smallest nursery
- - Dollars - - -
Assets

Current Assets
Cash on hand ........... 10,874 15,481 3,212
.,Accounts receivable. ....... 60,516 168,029 6,356
Inventories: Plants ....... 167,274 358,015 42,881
Supplies ...... 20,966 59,633 3,518
Total Current Assets. ........ 259,629 601,157 55,967

Long Term Assets
Machinery & equipment ....... 60,936 126,333 21,766
Buildings & fixtures ....... 221,495 435,912 73,007
Land .. ..... ........ 26.356 33,332 17,140
Sub-total (original cost). ( 308,787) ( 595,577) ( 111,913)(
Less accumulated depreciation. 154,038 329,592 47,762
Total Long Term Assets. ...... 154,749 265,985 64,152

Total Assets. ........... 414,379 867,142 120,119

Liabilities and Net worth
Liabilities
Current liabilities. ....... 23,811 56,298 8,006
Long-term liabilities. ...... 122,615 216,636 71,734
Total liabilities ......... 146,426 272,934 79,740

Net Worth ............. 267,953 594,208 40,379

Total Liabilities & Net Worth 414,379 867,142 120,119









nurseries had 1.86 times this amount, or $272,934 (31 percent of the assets).
Smallest ones had 54 percent of the Industry average, or $79,740 (66 percent of
the assets).
Net worth
Net worth is the difference between "total assets" and "total liabilities".
This is what the owner owns. The average net worth of all 35 nurseries was
$267,953 (65 percent of the assets). Largest nurseries had $594,208 (69
percent). Smallest nurseries averaged $40,379 (34 percent of the assets).


Total Profitability Model (Figure 1)


The Total Profitability Model (Figure 1) combines operating statement and
balance sheet data in three sections: margin management, asset management and
leverage management. Together, they indicate the firm's return on net worth.
Margin Management
Figures for this section come from Table 12. From nursery total gain
($508,135) are subtracted total deductions ($436,784) plus operator's salary
($31,790) to give return to capital ($39,561). This divided by total gain
($508,135) yields an average net profit margin of 9.55 percent. Largest nur-
series averaged a net profit margin of 10.97 percent. Smallest nurseries aver-
aged a loss of 4.94 percent.
Asset Management
Figures for this section come from the asset portion of Table 13. Current
assets ($259,629) plus long term assets ($154,749) make total assets of
$414,379. Total gain ($508,135) divided into total assets ($414,379) gives an
asset turnover figure of 1.2263. Asset turnover times net profit margin (7.79
percent) results in an average return to capital of 9.55 percent. Largest nur-
series averaged 10.97 percent return to capital. Smallest ones lost 4.94.
Leverage Management
Figures for this section come from the liabilities and net worth portion of
Table 13. Current liabilities ($23,811) plus long term liabilities ($122,615)
gives average total liabilities of $146,426. This subtracted from total assets
($414,379) yields average net worth of $267,953. Total liabilities and net
worth divided by net worth gives a leverage factor of 1.5465. Leverage times
return to capital (9.55 percent) gives a return on net worth of 14.76 percent.
Largest nurseries had 16.01 percent. Smallest nurseries lost 14.70 percent.


























































Figure 1.--Total profitability model, 35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in
Central Florida, 1986









Factors Associated With Level of Profit (Table 14)


In this section, information presented earlier is re-grouped to concentrate
attention on factors that are generally deemed related to level of profit in a
foliage nursery. The factors are presented in the same sequence that they ap-
peared before. But here, the average for all 35 nurseries is compared with the
average for the nine most profitable and the twelve least profitable of the nur-
series participating in the program. As will be seen, profit or lack of profit
does not.depend upon performance in any single area, but, rather, on the balance
of performance in all areas. Nevertheless, nursery operators analyzing their
own operations may find this section especially valuable for indicating the
general area of their business needing additional study and analysis.
"Net nursery income" from Table 12 was selected as the indicator for level
of profit. Average for all 35 nurseries was $71,351. The most profitable third
of the nurseries averaged 2.86 times this amount, or $203,842. The least
profitable third averaged -$11.912. The following compares the average for
these three groupings of foliage nurseries using one indicator from most of the
proceeding tables.
Size of Business"
The indicator of size of business selected from Table 1 was "Value of own
plants sold." The 35 nurseries averaged $487,548. The most profitable third
had twice this amount, or $1,014,684 in sales. The least profitable group
averaged $277,672, or about 57 percent of the average. This does not mean that
small businesses cannot be profitable, but it does indicate that larger profits
tend to be associated with higher dollar volumes of business.
Production Rate
The indicator of rate of production selected from Table 2 was "Value of own
plants sold per square foot of total bed and bench space." In general, other
things being equal, increasing sales per square foot of total bed and bench
space should increase the profitability of a nursery operation, hence is desir-
able. The average for all 35 nurseries was $4.59 per square foot. The most
profitable third had 9 percent more, or $5.00, and the least profitable third
had $3.32, or 72 percent of the average.
These figures show that higher sales per square foot of bed and bench space
in a nursery usually accompany higher profits. Lower sales per square foot may
indicate a number of things, such as devoting excessive space to stock plants,











letting plants continue to grow after reaching salable size, letting space sit
vacant too long between the time a plant is sold and another is put in place to
start growing again, selecting varieties that grow slower or are priced low
relative to their growing time and space requirements, and having disease and
quality problems that reduce yields of salable plants. In addition, nursery
layout and fertilizing and growing techniques can alter the time and space used
for the same crop in two different nurseries. Also, different marketing pro-
grams can alter the returns received for the same crop.




Table 14.--Factors associated with level of profit, 35 wholesale foliage plant
nurseries in Central Florida, 1986.
- ------------------- --------- --t==---------- -
Item Unit Average Average 9 Average 12 Your
all 35 most profit least profit nursery
Level of profit
Net nursery income (Table 12) $ 71,351 203,841 ( 11,912)
Factors associated with level of profit
Size of business (Table 1)
Value of own plants sold $ 487,548 1,014,684 277,672

Production rate (Table 2)
Sales/sq ft of total
bed and bench space --- $ 4.59 5.00 3.32

Labor efficiency (Table 3)
Own plant sales/employee $ 26,940 24,969 29,816

Space use intensity (Table 4)
Annual turnover of plant
inventory value ---- % 291 332 219

Use of capital (Table 5)
Annual turnover of owned
capital value - - % 118 135 98

Level of costs (Table 8)
Cost/sq ft of total bed space- $ 4.88 4.95 4.23

Cost efficiency (Table 10)
Cost/$ sales adjusted for
change in inventory value $ 1.03 .94 1.27
i ~:m~=-~~-=-============------------=t









Labor Efficiency
The indicator of efficiency in the management and use of labor selected from
Table 3 was "value of own plants sold per employee." Average for all 35
nurseries was $26,940 per person. Sales were seven percent lower than average
at $24,969 for the most profitable third, and ten percent higher than the
average at $29,816 for the least profitable third of the nurseries. Higher
sales per employee viewed alone at this point in time might seem to indicate
true efficiency. On the other hand, if viewed together with other indicators,
it might instead show less than optimum number of employees for volume of plants
being handled. This could result in tardy or untimely plant care, hence, slower
growth and lower quality plus a failure to restock empty space promptly. In
this case, other indicators such as production rate, space use intensity, capi-
tal turnover, and costs per square foot would not support the labor efficiency
indicator.
Lower sales per employee can result during periods of rapid expansion when
extra help is needed to care for larger numbers of plants before they begin
reaching salable size. Or it can also be the result of difficult economic times
when sales are slow, but plant care must go on. Differences between nurseries
can be the result of differences in investment in labor saving capital items,
the result of any or all of the factors noted above that lower production rate,
or the result of poor management practices in the planning and utilization of
labor.
Space Use Intensity
The indicator of intensity in the use of space selected from Table 4 was
"Annual turnover of plant inventory value." Generally speaking, larger per
centage turnover numbers are desirable, because they indicate that the value of
money tied up in inventory is being revolved faster. Average turnover was 291
percent, meaning that the value of own plants sold was 2.91 times the average
investment in plant inventory. For the most profitable third, it was 332 per-
cent. For the least profitable third, it was 219 percent.
Reduced intensity of space use may be the result of things that increase the
amount of money invested in inventory such as excessive investment in stock
plants, rapid expansion of the business so that plant values are up although
accompanying sales have not yet started, poor labor management so there is not
enough labor at crucial times for rapidly refilling empty space, selecting
varieties that grow slowly relative to the price they receive, inadequate










fertilization program resulting in slow plant growth, or holding plants too long
after they reach salable size. Or it can be the result of any of the items that
reduce sales volume for a given nursery as mentioned earlier. Either over or
under valuing inventory can also change the intensity of use figure. However,
variations in the indicator for this reason are ficticious, and do not provide a
sound basis for management evaluations or decisions.
Use of Capital
The indicator for efficiency in the use of capital selected from Table 5 was
"Annual turnover of owned capital value." This is expressed in percent. In
general, larger percentage turnover numbers are desirable, for they indicate
greater sales per dollar of investment in the nursery.
Annual turnover of owned capital averaged 118 percent, meaning that the
value of own plants sold during the year amounted to one and one sixth times the
capital invested. For the most profitable third, it was 135 percent. The rate
for the least profitable third was considerably lower than the average at 98
percent.
Problems that lower turnover rate include any of the items already mentioned
that lower production rate hence sales volume for a given nursery investment.
Low capital turnover is particularly common in nurseries just getting started,
or in nurseries that are expanding rapidly. Excessive investments in land,
labor saving machinery and equipment, or expensive (though maybe unnecessary)
niceties will also tend to lower capital turnover rate.
Level of Costs
The indicator of level of costs selected was "Costs per square foot of total
bed and bench space" from Table 8. This is a traditional indicator for
comparing costs between nurseries. Other things being equal, a lower cost per
square foot is desirable.
Costs per square foot of total bed and bench space averaged $4.88, or 29
cents more than sales per square foot before adjusting for changes in plant
inventory value ($4.59). For the most profitable third, costs were $4.95 per
square foot or seven cents greater than the average and five cents less than
sales per square foot ($5.00). The least profitable third averaged $4.23 cents,
which was $0.91 per square foot more than sales ($3.32).
Problems that cause costs per square foot to increase include inefficient
planning and utilization of labor, insufficient investment in labor saving cap-











ital items, destruction or theft of supplies and plants, not checking for best
price before purchasing needs, and not carefully managing the nursery operation.
Other causes of increased costs may not be a problem if they result In increased
revenue. One example might be increased costs for sleeves and packaging in
order to satisfy the requirements of a premium market.
Costs Efficiency
The indicator of cost efficiency selected was "Cost per dollar of sales ad-
justed for change in plant inventory." This shows how well the nursery did in
total, cash plus change in inventory values. In general, lower costs per dollar
of sales are desirable.
The average cost per dollar of sales adjusted for change in inventory for
the 35 nurseries was 1.03 cents. The similar figures for the most profitable
and least profitable third of nurseries was 94 cents and $1.27, respectively.
Thus, the least profitable third of nurseries had a deficit in meeting all costs
of 27 cents per dollar of sales adjusted for change in plant inventory.
Growth in Sales
Growth in sales of a business can, of course, be due in part to inflationary
price increases. It can also be the result of all the things already mentioned
that increase sales volume or plant inventory for a given operation. To stay
healthy, businesses do need to grow, at least enough to keep up with inflation.
But at the same time, growth needs to be planned and orderly so that it
contributes to the profitability of an operation. By way of contrast, too rapid
of an expansion program can result in excessive increases in costs and strong
needs for cash before the new plants have reached salable size. The growth,
though desirable in an economic sense, needs to be carefully planned and
executed.


Range of Figures (Table 15)


In this section, the average for all 35 nurseries is repeated for ease of
comparison. The remainder of the table differs from the previous section in
that the three best and three worst numbers for each factor were averaged to
provide the range of high-low figures shown. In the previous section, figures
for all factors were for the same groups of high profit and low profit nurser-
ies. This section shows the average for the best three and worst three numbers










regardless of the nursery or profit level to which they belong.
As can be seen in Table 15, quite a range of figures was found for most of
the factors. Nursery operators analyzing their own operation should be suspi
cious about any of their figures that fall outside these ranges. The discussion
of things that contribute to variations in the figures in the previous section
would also apply here.


Table 15.--Range of figures on factors associated with level of
wholesale foliage plant nurseries in Central Florida, 1986


profit,


Average 3 best 3 worst
Item Unit all 35 factor factor Your
nurseries average average nursery
Level of profit
Net nursery income (Table 12) $ 71,351 353,415 ( 57,774)
Factors associated with level of profit
Size of business (Table 1)
Value of own plants sold $ 487,548 1,896,226 24,391

Production rate (Table 2)
Sales/sq ft of total
bed and bench space -- $ 4.59 13.06 1.03

Labor efficiency (Table 3)
Own plant sale/employee- $ 29,940 108,432 7,875

Space use intensity (Table 4)
Annual turnover of plant
inventory value - % 291 715 100

Use of capital (Table 5)
Annual turnover of owned cap-
ital value - - % 118 197 28

Level of costs (Table 8)
Cost/sq ft of total bed space- $ 4.88 1.31 14.23

Cost efficiency (Table 10)
Cost/$ sales adjusted for
change in inventory value $ 1.03 .76 2.53












Seasonality of Sales (Figure 2)


Figure 2 compares average monthly sales of the 35 Central Florida Foliage
nurseries with annual average monthly total costs and annual average monthly
cash costs. In 1986, wholesale nursery sales peaked March thru May, dropped
thru July, rose through October, then bottomed in December.
Compared to annual average monthly costs, sales exceeded total costs January
through June and for the month of October. Sales exceeded the annual average
cash costs in all months except December.



CONCLUDING COMMENTS


Nursery operators who are interested in seeing how they compare with those
participating in the Florida Nursery Business Analysis Program may calculate
their own numbers using the formulas shown and write the results on the lines
provided for this purpose on each table. Another alternative is to acquire the
University of Florida microcomputer program, FOLAGNBA.BAS, for making these
calculations. Either alternative should provide some valuable insight into the
business side of operating a foliage nursery. It should improve management
decisions concerning things that affect the profitability of the nursery
operation.
Nursery operators who find this kind of information to be useful, but have
difficulty finding the time or energy to engage in the tedium of doing their own
calculation may wish to consider becoming a participant in the Florida Nursery
Business Analysis Program. If you would like to do so, contact the ornamental
agent in your nearby county Extension office, or contact the authors in
Gainesville. Nursery operators who authorize a commercial accounting firm to
supply the data required for the program can participate with a minimum of
effort on their part.












































Jan


Feb


Figure 2.--Monthly sales
Florida, 1986


Mar Apr May June July Aug Sept Oct Nov Dec

MONTH

compared to average monthly costs, 35 wholesale foliage plant nurseries in Central


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