For most of us, moving is usually an exciting process that opens new perspectives and gives new emotions. However, it may become a severe challenge and adaptation risk for plants. The crucial organizational moments include preparing the plant for relocation and protecting it from heat, cold, or transportation problems. Those who don’t succeed in this often decide to leave their green pets at home. In any case, the well-being of your green friends depends on your desire to help them to survive. If you want your houseplant to move to a new house with you, read the article below to get all the lifehacks.
- Care. You need to cut off the dead leaves on your houseplants before moving them to the new environment.
- Temperature control. You need to transport your plants with you: don’t leave them alone in an unknown environment. If you stop in a hotel for a night, take your plants with you, and don’t leave them in a car — they may be affected by extreme temperatures. Also, don’t forget to stop the car several times to let the fresh air in (in case the weather is hot). In winter, put the bottles with hot water or heating pads in the transportation box.
- Watering. Also, stop watering the plants for 3-5 days: the soil should be dry so that the root system won’t die due to temperature changes. The soil must be dry so that the root system does not die due to temperature fluctuations; otherwise, decay is inevitable. If it’s a summer trip, water them on the day of moving and during the journey. If it’s a winter trip, water your green pets a few days before the trip.
- Stress protection. Hide your plants from direct sun for 1-2 days — this will help them avoid extra stress.
- Packaging. Plants can be easily damaged during transportation, so they should be carefully wrapped in paper, plastic bags, or bubble wrap. Pack them to avoid cold, heat, wind, and sunlight types of stress.
- To transport thorny plants, use thickened foam to protect them from serious damage. Place foam pieces on the thorns, fasten them with tape, and put them in a box. Hold the bottom of the pot and the trunk itself during transportation.
How to Pack Plants for Moving Safely
Transportation in the cold season requires additional attention. You should place two small bottles filled with hot water between the pots in the box and fill the free space with paper or cloth. Hot water will keep your plants warm and prevent them from freezing. Flowers must be transported in a completely closed container. Cover the plant with a bag. Gently twist the branches of large specimens, fix them with pegs, and wrap them with insulating material.
Cacti and thorny plants must be attached to styrofoam during transportation and wrapped. As for branched plants with high peduncles, it is better to place the stems in large polyethylene or linen bags.
How to Prepare Plants for Long Transportation
It is necessary to prepare for the transportation of plants 5-10 days before departure. If possible, transplant the flowers from ceramic pots into plastic containers. On the way, there is less risk that fragile plant pots will be damaged or even completely broken.
Option 1. Cling film
You can use the wrap, especially if your plants are large. Begin to wrap the plant from the root and go up, thereby gently pressing the branches. For small plants, use containers.
Option 2. Buy cardboard boxes for transportation.
The perfect way is to choose containers that fit the size of the pots, so you will put one flower in one container. But even if you have to put more than one plant in each package, you can do it too. You need to put a seal between them, which won’t allow them to be in contact. Crumpled paper, soft fabric, and foam rubber can be easily used.
Another important point is to place plants in the car next to you to prevent them from falling over. Try to fix the flowerpots and flower boxes tightly and securely. Don’t place heavy objects next to the plants because they can fall and damage the pets. If there are many things in your car, load the plants last for them to be unloaded first.
Know the Law
Also, you need to make sure that you can take all plants with you because some countries don’t allow certain species of botanical visitors to be taken over their borders. So, contact the state’s department of agriculture and ask for the restrictions. For example, the following US states have very strict rules for moving plants: Florida, Arizona, California, Washington, and Oregon.
After you reach your destination, give your plants a few weeks to recover from the shock. You can notice some plants losing their leaves — don’t worry, it’s a normal process of them coping with stress.
- Do not leave your plants on the street long after unloading from a car. This applies to any season of the year but especially to winter because you may cause an additional temperature drop. If you are moving in the summer, immediately unpack the plant in a new apartment and remove the wrapping. If you are traveling in winter, leave the boxes in the package for a couple of hours for plants to get used to the new temperature.
- Remove any damaged leaves and put the plant in partial shade. After this, give the flower its new place. During the first two weeks, observe your plants carefully and let them maintain a so-called ‘quarantine period’. Try not to overwater them. After quarantine is over, place the plants in their permanent places and provide them with the usual care.
Truly, the process of plant transportation may be both tricky and demanding. Nevertheless, if you prepare all the necessary materials in advance, your botanical collection will stay healthy and will quickly adapt to the new conditions. Also, if you can’t take all the houseplants to your new home — due to the shortage of space, law restrictions, or other reasons, ask your friends whether they would like to take care of your plants. Anyway, you can always find a safe place for your green pets — a hospital, kindergarten, school, etc.