Best Way to Move House Plants Across Country

Are you thinking about the best way to move house plants across the country because of your soon-to-happen long distance relocation? We got you covered. Even though cross country relocation companies don’t ship living plants, they still have the best advice on how to do it without losing your precious home additions in transportation.

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August 25, 2020 Posted in How-to

If you wanted to know Can you take plants with you when you move house or Can you move plants cross country, the answer is yes, of course, but most likely by yourself. Companies in relocation business usually don’t take the responsibility of transporting pots with greenery across state borders because they need care, sunlight and watering every once in a while, and the movers simply don’t have time to do that, especially if your things are going to spend some time in a storage unit. If greenery is on your list of moving essentials, we have a few tips. Here’s what steps you should take before the date of move, what can you do during transportation, and how to unpack without breaking the leaves or spilling the soil. Let’s dive in.

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First, Check the State’s Regulations and Climate

Before you even start thinking about relocating your flora to another home, see if the state you’re coming to accepts what you’re taking with you. Some states only allow bringing a plant that has been indoors in a pot, and some have strict rules even for that. If you’re relocating to California, Oregon, Washington, Arizona, or Florida, keep in mind that they are especially rigid in this regard. For other states, check The United States Department of Agriculture or the state’s department of natural resources – they can provide you with all the details regarding the shipment of flora. If you want to know Can you move plants after planting them outside, the answer can be tricky. Certain states don’t allow that because they want to minimize the spread of harmful insects, diseases, or other pests that can be common if your plant was outside.

A Thing to Keep in Mind: Can Your Flora Thrive in the Place You’re Going To?

It’s not just about how doable moving plants across the country is, or does the state allow it. Your concern should also be will your herb grow and thrive in the climate you’re moving to. Be sure that you’ve checked that the weather in your new hometown will be as good or even better than the previous one if you’re moving to a different climate.

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Know all the rules and information before you start planning the relocation

Look for the Best Method to Prepare Your Leafy Friends Before the Move

One of the reasons why people struggle with a question on how to move house plants long distance is because it takes weeks of planning and preparing, and it causes moving stress. Keep in mind that the weather must be apt as well. Whether you’re moving in the summer when the heat is the enemy of your herbs or moving in winter when the cold and dry air can do a number on your green friends, you must try to protect it as much as possible. It’s recommended to relocate when the weather in your state is mild.

Here’s what else you can do to prepare them and make this transportation easier:

  • If any of the flora in your home were in a ceramic pot, change it for a plastic one of the same size. Different size pots can damage the plant since it’s used to living in that specific space, while sturdy plastic is much more convenient for relocating than ceramics.
  • Don’t water your flora at least five days before the relocation day, because the water will make the pot heavier, and you don’t want to get your cardboard boxes wet or moist.
  • Cut dry vines, branches, and leaves. They will most certainly fall during the travel, and it will create an additional mess that you don’t want.
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Know That You Might Need a Form That There Are No Pests on Your Vegetation

It’s crucial to check your flora for insects that live on it, both indoors and outdoors ones. If you notice some, treat the plant or consider not relocating it. You can also call an agricultural department to ask if an authorized examiner can come and clear everything. After that, you’ll receive forms that you can keep in case you need to show them at state borders.

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Being prepared is always the top method to be stress-free

Now It’s Time to Learn How to Pack Plants for Moving to Your New State

This is the time to get all the types of packing materials required for safe packing and relocation. You will need lots of boxes (or crates), packing paper, plastic bags, and bubble wrap. Proper packing will save all of your vegetation on this long trip.

So, when to start packing for a move with vegetation? We say – at least three weeks in advance. You will have enough time to get all you need, organize, and pack everything. Get extra boxes or crates, just in case, and make sure that they’re firm enough. The plan on packing depends mostly on how many greenery you have and how big they are.

What are the most common steps?

  • Start by organizing your flora according to families and size if you’re relocating more than one.
  • Take a plastic bag, place it over the pot, and tie it at the base, so the soil doesn’t spill around.
  • The trick is to keep every pot to stand upright during the whole trip. You can do it by playing Tetris with the space you have inside the box or a crate.
  • Place as many pots in the box or a crate and make sure that they can’t move. Fill the space around the pot with packing paper and cover it with bubble wrap.
  • If you’re using crates, make sure that they’re stackable, but don’t stack heavy greenery on top, no matter how big and heavy the plant is below. It can damage the leaves or even ruin the whole plant below.
  • If you’re going with boxes, make holes in the walls so that your flora can breathe.
  • Tape the box well and label it with “fragile” or “live plant,” just like you would with any other moving labels.

You Will Need a Zip-Lock Bag for a Cutting of the Plant You Like but Can’t Pack

Don’t be surprised if you end up with a herb that you can’t bring because there’s no room left, or you just can’t figure out how to pack it. It’s not the end of the world, so don’t worry, if that specific plant can’t fit your moving across the country checklist, you can take a cutting.

There are different methods for each family of flora, but they all include having a sharp knife and cutting a healthy growth. Keep it moist with wet paper towels in a zip-lock bag and replant it once you come to your new place. If you have to leave some of your greenery behind, and you’re moving to a smaller home, that might not be such a bad idea.

What Would Be the Best Way to Move House Plants Across the Country?

There are a couple of ways to have a successful relocation of your flora. You can ship them in your car, by truck, airplane, or you can mail them. We’ll explain each one so that you can decide exactly what suits you the most.

  • The first and the most common method of transporting vegetation is via car. If you can and want to drive to your future location, just put the boxes and crates with flora in the car with you. Avoid putting them in the trunk if you’re going to drive for more than one day. The lack of air, light, and temperature might damage it. If you have your greenery with you in the car, and you’re staying somewhere overnight, bring the boxes and crates with you and give some air and light while you’re resting.
  • The second option on how to move with plants is by renting a truck. In case you’re getting auto transport services and you won’t be driving your car, you can rent a truck for your herbs. It’s not the most affordable option, but it does answer the question How do you transport large plants when moving. It’s also efficient if you have a lot of greenery that can’t fit into a car.
  • The third solution is transporting by air. Cuttings are the easiest to carry on an airplane, but you can also take your greenery with you. Be sure to contact the airline you will be using and ask them are there any specifics that you should know about.
  • Another answer to how to transport plants is shipping them as mail. Whichever company you choose, contact them and ask for restrictions or guidelines. Avoid weekends and holidays, as well as extreme weather. Shippers can’t guarantee that the package will stay upright, so you’ll need to protect it as much as you can. Mailing your flora to another state should be your last option because it might not be a successful one.
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Chose the method of shipping the greenery that works best for you

After Move Tips – Unpacking and Recovering

Once you’ve arrived at your destination and started unpacking, be sure that you open the boxes and unload the crates as soon as possible. Take the herbs out, remove the plastic bags, and water them. They will recover after a few weeks, so you might see them losing leaves. Don’t worry, this is a normal reaction to the shock of the change, and it will pass.

It’s important to know how to open the boxes properly without spilling the soil or breaking the herb. Start with cutting the tape on the box from the bottom, return it to the upright position and just pull the box up so you don’t damage the branches.

The only thing left is to find the perfect place for the plant in your new apartment, and to take care of it.

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Don't let your vegetation stay in boxes longer than they should

Look for Highly-Recommended Long Distance Relocation Services for the Rest of Your Belongings

While all of this preparing and learning about how to move plants occupies your time, a team of professional long distance movers can handle everything else. Even though hiring a professional cross country company isn’t really the cheapest way to move out of state, it’s the most effective one. A reliable moving company will handle all your belongings with care, they will disassemble and reassemble everything, which is great news if you’re moving furniture as well. Most importantly, you will have one worry less on your mind during this tense time.

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Be sure that you've found a reliable relocation company

Moving Plants to Another State Might Not Seem Easy, but It’s Doable

If you can’t imagine your living space without your beloved greenery, or some of them hold sentimental value, you shouldn’t hesitate to bring them with you. Even though relocating with an indoor or outdoor vegetation isn’t quite simple, we promise a smooth and stress-free relocation with these tips.

Daisy Wilson

Daisy was born in Salt Lake City and in her free time, she writes about moving and watches Charmed.



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