A nursery is a place where plants are propagated and grown to a desired age. They include retail nurseries which sell to the general public, wholesale nurseries which sell only to businesses such as other nurseries and to commercial gardeners, and private nurseries which supply the needs of institutions or private estates.
Nurseries may supply plants for gardens, agriculture, forestry and conservation biology.
Some of them specialize in one phase of the process: propagation, growing out, or retail sale; or in one type of plant: e.g., groundcovers, shade plants, or rock garden plants. Some produce bulk stock, whether seedlings or grafted, of particular varieties for purposes such as fruit trees for orchards, or timber trees for forestry. Some produce stock seasonally, ready in springtime for export to colder regions where propagation could not have been started so early, or to regions where seasonal pests prevent profitable growing early in the season.