How to Pack Plants for a Move

If you have a garden you cannot live without, you may want to try taking it with you. With care, you can move even established plants. Plan carefully to minimize damage and shock to your plants.


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    Understand any regulations applying to your move. Certain international and state laws do not allow transportation of certain types of plants.
    • Proper labeling with specifications such as name and address of the shipper and receiver, botanical name and so on can streamline the whole process.
    • You might want to seek help from NGOs and other advisory councils who specialize in plant inspection and transportation.
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    Consider the climate wherever you will be going. Does your new home get hotter or colder than your old one did? Will any plants be unable to make the trip for that reason?
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    Consider space in your new place. Will you have the space for your garden when you get there?
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    Reduce the amount you will need to carry.
    • Determine what parts of your new garden you can incorporate.
    • Figure out what plants you may be able to replace when you get there.
    • Take cuttings or starts if it's appropriate to do so.
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    Begin the transplantation process.
    • Transfer the plants to appropriate containers. A plastic pot usually does the trick unless you need something stronger or larger.
    • Repot smaller plants, if necessary.
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    Dig plants out of the soil at least three weeks in advance before the move. It will give the plants a chance to adapt to their pots before the move.
    • Dig out the roots of larger plants with decent quantity of soil surrounding them. Add a moderate amount of water to help hold soil together.
    • Wrap the base of the plant with a plastic bag and secure it around the stem.
    • Protect the shrubs from the top by enclosing them with newspaper or plastic. Poke holes to allow for breathing. Arrange the plants in a box, insulated with shredded paper, bubble wrap or packing peanuts.
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    Transport the plants the right way. If you will be carrying the plants yourself, try to maintain a stable temperature the whole time, and avoid a bumpy ride. During winter, proper insulation is the key. Seek shade and airy spaces during the summer.
    • Many packers and movers do not transport plants. Many other movers and packers do not cover the liability of damage or loss.
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    Once you have arrived at your new home, remove the enclosures around the plants immediately and water them. Wait a week or so before you replant your plants.

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Categories: Gardening | Moving House and Packing