Who is a Horticulture Producer?

For the purposes of TAEP, an eligible Horticulture operation is involved in the production of tree/plant stock for sale and is aimed at increasing profitability of the operation.

• Tree farms
• Nurseries
• Plant farms

Horticulture Applicant Requirements

• The applicant’s business must produce the majority of their plants from seed or cutting to finished product.
     - Businesses who make the majority of their gross sales from plants purchased for resale are not eligible.

Consumer & Industry Services (Regulatory):
• Producers must meet all state and local regulatory requirements at time of application submission (Oct. 1 - 7, 2023).
• Applicants producing nursery stock, greenhouse plants, turf grass, etc. must be licensed by the State of Tennessee. Contact the Tennessee Department of Agriculture – Consumer and Industry Services at 615-837-5137 for more information on required permits.

Horticulture Producer Cost Share Opportunities

Standard Producer – 35% Cost Share - $12,000 Reimbursement Maximum

All approved applicants with Horticulture projects are eligible for 35% cost share. There are no special requirements for 35% cost share.

Master Producer – 50% Cost Share - $12,000 Reimbursement Maximum

To be eligible for 50% cost share, applicant must complete special requirements prior to the program reimbursement request deadline of August 1, 2024. The name registered for the special requirement must be the same name as the individual applying for cost share funding.

Special Requirements for 50% Cost Share

Horticulture Special Requirements – applicant must complete one (1) of the following educational courses to qualify for 50%

— UT Master Nursery Producer (preferred)
— UT Master Farm Manager
— UT Master Farm Health & Wellness
— TSU New Farmer Academy

• Applicant must have participated in special requirements from 2020-2024.

• Certificate must be in the name of the applicant applying for cost share funding.

• Applicants are encouraged to participate in the UT Master Nursery Producer course before taking other educational courses.

• Visit www.tnmasternursery.com or call UT TMNP Coordinator’s office at 865-974-7152 for more information about the UT Master Nursery Producer course.

What Horticulture Projects Qualify for TAEP?

The proposed activity/project must encompass quality expansion or improvement of the applicant’s farm and business. The eligible categories are: farm infrastructure, specialty equipment and marketing.

Competitive Projects – Horticulture:

Priority is given to long-term projects that focus on improving or increasing production.
• Marketing projects that are long-term in nature are allowed but are not considered as competitive as those involving production.
• Only complete applications that include sufficient information will be considered for evaluation.

Approved applicants will receive a revised budget with reimbursement documentation. The revised budget indicates approved items per committee review, cost share allocation amount, and status of special requirement participation. All committee decisions are final.

• Not all eligible items are listed; please contact the Producer Diversification Coordinator for project eligibility or clarification prior to applying for TAEP cost share.
• All eligible items requested may not be approved due to the competitive evaluation of the program.
• To ensure long-term investments, items requested must be able to meet the five (5) year verification period to be considered for cost share.

* Include dimensions and designs with project proposal.

Aeration system – flowers
Cold frames*
Cold Storage *
  •     Walk in cooler
  •     Components
Container production area*
Drying house – flowers*
Fan – greenhouse
Fertilizer equipment
Field planter
Gravel – geotextile preferred
  •     Foundation*
  •     Propagation area*
  •     Container production
Greenhouse *
  •     Covering
  •     Overwintering
  •     Shade system
  •     Structure
Heater – greenhouse
High tunnel/hoop house*
  •     Controller system
  •     Filter system
  •     Overhead/drip
  •     Pivot
  •     Pond liner
  •     Pump

Lighting – not for aesthetics
  •     Greenhouse*
Loading area/dock*
Packing facility*
Packing line equipment
Potting building*
Potting wagon
Propagation building*
Propagation mats
Rolling carts
Sod harvester
Soil mixer
Spray equipment
Thermal tag printer – horticulture only
Thermostat – greenhouse
Tree baler –standing
Tree claw
Tree lifter/shaker
Tree hauling wagons
Tree spade
Tree transplanter
Tree trimmer
Water level control
Water storage tanks
Website development – no fees
Wood boiler

Building – storage
Containers – bottles, pots, packaging
Drip Tape
Driveways, trails, paths, roads, etc.
Electrical consumption
Fees – membership
Giveaway items
Golf cart
Growing buckets/pots
Hemp Projects
Labor – applicant
Land – clearing of
Maintenance of existing structures, equipment, items

Meeting expenses
Motorized vehicles – ATV, forklift, tractor
Office equipment
Paper chain pots
Plants – liners/plugs
Product development
Property – purchase or debt payment
Renovations – of existing structures
Seeds – produce, nursery, flowers, etc.
Solar Power Equipment
Store – general
Trade show display and expenses
Trailers – livestock
Used equipment
Water source creation – ponds/wells
Website – annual, domain or hosting fees

Email producer.diversification@tn.gov for additional information.