Making a long-distance move is stressful. Packing to ensure that nothing gets broken is a chore in itself and when you add plants to the mix, it may seem like an impossible task. Never fear, we’re here to make your long-distance move with plants easy and stress-free!
Tips For Moving Plants
Before the Move
1. Repot your plants
Repotting your plants in plastic pots allows you to cushion their fragile pots in packing materials, ensuring that they don’t break during the move. Do this about three weeks before moving so that your plants have time to acclimate to their new pots before going through the shock of moving!
2. Prune and check for insects
Removing dead leaves and flowers will make your plants easier to move while also making them happier. In addition, many states have insect and pest restrictions when it comes to plants so ensuring that your plants are pest-free is best! Do both of these things 2-3 weeks before moving.
3. Check the plant restrictions for your new home
Some states like California are notorious for extensive and strict regulations when it comes to bringing plants in. A lot of these restrictions apply even if you’re just driving through the state, so make sure that your plants are documented and have everything that they need before you embark!
4. Water your plants
Watering your plants a few days before the move is critical. If you water them on the day of your move or a day or two before, they can cause a mess, freeze, or have trouble acclimating to a new climate. Generally, 3 days before your move is the best time to water but make sure that you don’t overwater!
1. Place plants in boxes with holes for air
A tight lid with no air holes = a dead plant.
2. Wrap up bigger plants
Utilize sheets or towels that you need to pack anyways and use them to wrap the branches of your larger plants. This will help to prevent breakage along the way. You can also use them to ensure that your plants stay upright by packing the sheets and towels in between plants, giving no room for them to move around in the box. Just don’t cover up the entire plant!
3. Label your boxes
Know where your plants are at all times and label them accordingly. They should be the first thing in the car and the first thing out.
4. Keep them at a reasonable temperature
Climate-controlled moving trucks or cars with air conditioning and heating work best for plants because they can go into shock when they’re moved into a vastly different environment. Keeping them somewhere where you can control the temperature is a good idea.
Your plan is set and you’re ready to bring your plants along for the ride, now what?
It’s important to familiarize yourself with local laws and regulations for plants. As mentioned previously, it even states that you drive through matter! There’s nothing worse than getting to the border of a state and being forced to throw away a plant that you have had for years.
It’s best to look up regulations per state. You can find federal information on the USDA website and the specific state’s information on that State’s Department of Agriculture website. If you have any trouble, contact your local Department of Agriculture, and see if they can help!
Examples of Laws When Moving Plants
1. Only indoor plants can be moved
Some places do not allow any outdoor plants to come into their state.
2. Requiring you to replace the soil
Changing your plant’s soil to new, sterile soil is a requirement in a few states.
3. Requiring an inspection and certificate
A few states go as far as requiring that all plants be inspected and have documentation to match.
Some states require quarantine periods and don’t allow certain types of plants to come in at all. Doing your research ahead of time is important because not obeying these regulations can result in fines and/or confiscation of your plants.
Moving your plants long distances can be easy, but you have to prepare ahead of time! Taking the right steps to acclimate your plant to its new environment and making sure that it has the most comfortable trip possible will help it reach its destination in one piece. Researching rules and regulations for traveling with plants before you move will save you a huge headache!