How to Prepare Plants for Moving
Pack up your "plantation" with care. Here's how:
- Load plants last, in the back of the truck, so they'll be the first things off.
- Take small plants out of their containers and wrap the root bases in damp newspaper. Place in a plastic food-storage bag and seal by wrapping a rubber band around the stems just below the foliage.
- Keep wrapped plants out of direct sunlight. Don't let them sit in the car, including the trunk, overnight.
- For large plants: To avoid moving the whole plant, make a cutting with pruning shears on a 45-degree angle. Strip the lower section of leaves. Cut a piece of floral foam (not the kind for dried flowers -- use the kind that absorbs water) with a piece of wire and insert it into a plastic container, perhaps the bottom of a milk jug or yogurt container. Soak the foam with water. Punch holes in the foam with a pencil or scissors and insert the cutting into the hole. One piece of foam can accommodate a number of cuttings. If you don't have any floral foam, use a potato instead. Make a hole in the potato and insert the cutting. Many can fit in one potato.
- No matter what time of year it is, dig up the bulbs and store them in paper-not plastic-bags. Cut away any dead or damaged area of the bulb before storing. Bulbs will keep quite a while this way. Plant directly in new soil after the move.
- Snap off the ends of succulents and store in a cardboard box or paper bag (not plastic). Plants will keep for up to six months this way. Simply repot in fresh dirt after the move.
- Prune large plants to make sure they aren't top-heavy and won't tip. Put the container in a large box and surround with bunched-up newspaper to keep it from shifting in the box.
- Water the plants the day before moving them, rather than the same day.