Greener Cities Creating Opportunities for Live Plants, Shrubs, & Trees

While the bulk of demand for live plants, shrubs, and trees is generated by rural and suburban homeowners with large yards and high incomes, a new Freedonia Group analysis of the $10.7 billion US market for these goods identifies a number of rising environmental trends among urban dwellers that are expanding sales opportunities in cities – including:

  • green/vegetative roofing systems and living walls
  • urban greenspace, park, and community garden and farming projects

Semi-intensive & intensive green roofs support broader range of plant life

Green/vegetative roofing systems are becoming a common sight in urban centers due to their ability to help regulate internal building temperatures, lower energy costs, and mitigate the effects of urban heat islands. These systems will see robust growth going forward – albeit from a small base – and growers of live plants, shrubs, and trees will benefit in particular from installations of semi-intensive and intensive systems, which have sufficient growing media depths to support a wider range of live goods than basic extensive systems.

According to Freedonia’s recent Green (Vegetative) Roofing study, the area of green roofing systems in the US will total 5.3 million square feet in 2023, about 30% of which will be accounted for by semi-intensive and intensive systems.

Furthermore, living walls are another key trend in the live goods market, as these artful compositions of plant life can be installed either indoors or outdoors and can help buildings achieve similar energy-saving effects to costlier green roofing systems.

Urban greenspace investment bolstering live goods sales

Another important trend in urban markets for live goods involves the creation or expansion of greenspaces, such as community gardens, farming collectives, and parks – all of which typically entail purchases of live plants, shrubs, and trees.

Such projects often begin at the grassroots level with community members working together to convert blighted or empty lots into aesthetically appealing landscapes that help deter crime and pests such as rats and provide a habitable space for community members to interact, relax, and find sustenance. Building owners and local governments also benefit, as investing in these projects can lead to higher property and rental values and more foot traffic around area businesses.

Want to learn more?

For more insight on these and other trends affecting the US market for live plants, shrubs, and trees, check out Live Goods: Plants, Trees, & Shrubbery, now available from the Freedonia Group.

More information regarding the study is here:

The study provides historical demand data at the grower level for 2008, 2013, and 2018 and forecasts for 2023 by product, region, and end user. In addition, the study analyzes major factors impacting demand; growth opportunities; consumer survey data and trends; and retail sales, channels, and marketing strategies. The study also includes profiles analyzing leading growers in the market.