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How to Move With Plants

Posted: July 7, 2022
Plants are being put into boxes to prepare for a move.

Many plant owners ask themselves “How to move with plants” and what’s the best way to go about answering this question. To answer the “How to move plants” question, you’ll also need to answer the “How to pack plants for moving” question and whether or not you want to ship plants. 

Moving with plants takes some preparation, and our Moving Help® guide can help you decide what preparation steps you want to take when moving with plants. 

What to Know About Your Plants Before Your Move

You’ll need to make sure you take some preparation steps before your moving day with plants. If you’re moving out of state or out of the country, you’ll need to call or look up online what those states and countries rules are for bringing in foreign plants. Nothing will be worse than preparing and moving your plants only to find out they aren’t allowed in your new state or country. 

You also need to find out whether you can transport your plants. Most companies don’t allow plants in their trucks, storage units, or storage shipping containers. For example, you can’t ship plants in a U-Haul U-Box storage container

More often than not, you’ll have to bring your plants with you personally. Most people pack their plants in their cars. 

Preparing Plants Before Your Move

About three weeks prior to moving day, you’ll want to begin preparing your plants for the move. Below is a list of steps you might consider when packing your plants the night before or the day of the move. 

  • Move your plants from similar-sized ceramic pots to similar-sized plastic pots to avoid breaking pots
    • Keep your ceramic pots, but this will allow you to pack them properly with the rest of your belongings
  • If necessary, prune plants back to keep them healthy and fresh before your move 
  • Water plants on their normal routine schedule 
  • Make sure your plants don’t have parasites or insects on them
    • Treat plants that have parasites or insects, or you can avoid bringing them with you at all 
  • Pack carefully by wrapping the plants
    • Use newspapers to wrap plants, and you can use newspapers to cushion the box 
  • Use plastic bags to cover plants to avoid soil from spilling over 
  • Poke holes in box and loosely close box to allow plants to breathe 
  • Label the box carefully as plants 
  • Place plants in your car but avoid placing them in the trunk 

Preparing Plants During Your Move

If you’re taking your plants with you personally, you’ll want to place the plants in your car either in the front seat or behind you. You should keep your car at a comfortable temperature because if your car is too hot or too cold, it could hurt your plants. You also should avoid placing plants in the trunk because it’ll be too hot. 

If your move is more than a one-day move, you’ll need to bring your plants inside once you reach your pitstop destination. Once inside, you can open the lids to allow more air for the plants to breathe. 

If your trip takes more than three days to reach your new home, you may consider watering your plants at some point during your trip. Plants typically can live up to seven days without water depending on several factors. 

Preparing Plants After Your Move

Finally, once you’ve arrived at your new home, you’ll want to prepare your plants once again. You’ll want to unpack your plants immediately. Moving with plants can be stressful on the plant so consider waiting a week before replanting the plant in its old ceramic pot. 

You shouldn’t move plants too much. You should pick a spot that you think will work best when moving with plants and then leave it alone. A plant will need time to acclimate to its new environment, temperature, and humidity to be able to flourish and bloom. 

Can I Ship My Plants?

Yes, you can ship your plants. The United States Postal Service, UPS, and FedEx all provide shipping services for your plants. You’ll get many options that could potentially fit within your budget. 

If you do ship your plants, make sure you label your box carefully and follow any other requirements. You should know your plants won’t receive any extra special attention. 

What If I Can’t Bring All My Plants?

If you don’t have the money, time, or room to bring all your plants, you have several options to consider. 

The first option is to sell your plants and use that money to buy new plants when you move into your new home. The second option is to give your plants away as gifts to your friends and family members. The third option is to donate your plants to places such as a hospital or senior living community center. 

While it can be hard to depart from your plants, it’ll be one less item to pack and stress over during your move. Most plants are replaceable, so this may be the best option for you when deciding to move with plants. 

Moving Plants With Care 

You can move plants with care by following the Moving Help guide. Our guide will keep you prepared before your move, during your move, and after your move. This will help increase your chances of your plants staying alive during a move.