10 Tips on How to Carefully Pack Your Plants When Moving

Packing and moving your houseplants is similar to relocating with little children: you’ll need to take additional precautions to keep them safe throughout the relocation process, since they’re delicate, just like your loved ones, and they’ll require some time to acclimatize to their new surroundings.

Without a doubt, relocating your favorite plants in ideal settings is always a difficult operation, as unexpected changes in temperature, light, and other factors may easily harm them. However, with a little forethought, you can safely transfer your houseplants to your new home and help them thrive there, resulting in a gorgeous garden in your new location.

The greater care you offer your plants on moving day, the easier and faster they will acclimatize to their new home’s environment. We recognize that while migrating to a new location, you will have a large number of items that will require your undivided attention in order to pack and transport them securely to your new home.

However, when it comes to relocating your cherished plants, it’s important to know how to do so safely, since they can’t be stuffed into a box and will require sunshine, water, and air to stay alive throughout the move. People must constantly deal with various stressful duties during relocation, such as securely packing all belongings, putting them safely in a suitable vehicle, locating trustworthy movers and packers, and so on, and this is the major reason they fail to pack and transport their plants effectively.

But there’s no need to be concerned since we’ll show you how to securely transfer your houseplants in your new home. Below are a few tips on how to carefully pack your plants when moving.

10 Tips on how to carefully pack your plants when moving

Capture plant

1. Decide which plants to move

Before you move your plants, think realistically about the new area’s weight, space, and climate. Some plants cannot survive certain climates or temperatures, or it may be very costly to move plants to another country.

2. Preparing your plants for moving

Whether you are planning to drive your plants to the new home all by yourself or engaging commercial movers to handle the job, there are several precautions you need to take to make sure the plants arrive safe and sound.

As you prepare to pack the plants, you need to consider regulations concerning moving plants from one area to another. Keep in mind that regulations differ from one state to another.

 For instance, if you are in the United States, you need to follow the US Department of Agriculture guidelines. The guidelines are put in place to prevent the spread of dangerous pests and insects.

 3. Get suitable pots for your plants

 Two to three weeks before moving your plants, you need to re-pot them into unbreakable pots. These are containers that cannot break when moving your plants. Moreover, the plants will have enough time to adapt to the new container.

Shatterproof containers are well designed to ensure that any sudden movements or bumps will not break the container or harm the soil or the plant’s roots.

If you recruit professional movers to move your plants, you need to re-pot each plant you are moving. But if you will relocate the plants in your car, you can decide not to re-pot.

However, you need to ensure you drive carefully to protect the plants from any danger.

4. Prune the plants

Pruning your plants before moving them is very important. Some of the plants might be having long branches that may not fit into the packing boxes. Therefore, it is a good idea to prune them.

It would help if you pruned the plants two to three weeks before moving. By pruning and re-pot 2 to 3 weeks before relocating, you will give them enough time to settle in the new container. It will also decrease the risk of shock when relocated to a new area.

5. Remove pests and weeds

Check your plants for pests and weeds one week before moving them. If there are pests, get rid of them immediately since you do not want to move them to the new place.

6. Water the plants properly

Before moving them, you should water your plants routinely for two to three days. Watering them on a moving day is risky since the muddy soil can mess with the moving truck. After moving them, do not water them until they are in the new environment.

7. Pack the plants

When it is time to pack your plants, you need to properly. Nevertheless, it will depend on whether it is a DIY move or hiring movers to do the job for you.

If you want to move them yourself, packing them is more manageable. Exploring cross country moving options can provide additional insights and tips to ensure your plants survive the transition and continue to thrive in your new home, especially when dealing with varied climate zones. All you need is to pack the small plants in an open box and the big ones upright on the floor.

But if you have engaged a professional moving company, you need to get a box that can comfortably fit the plants. Then place the plant inside and then tape up the bottoms of the box to minimize the risk of the plant falling through.

It is also good to have plastic bags over the pots to prevent soil or mud from spilling. The empty spaces between the plant containers need to be filled with extra plastic bags, newspaper, or bubble wrap.

Then put a few holes on the sides of the box to allow air to flow. Seal the box properly and clearly label it. The labeling box will make sure anyone who handles it during moving knows what is inside.

8. Packing larger plants

If your plants are too big to pack in the box, the best option is to take a cut. Taking a cut is better than moving without the whole plant or jeopardizing the entire plant.

But before you decide to take a cut, you need to make sure the plant can be re-grown. Some plants cannot be re-grown, while others can be re-grown.

If your plant can be re-grown, use a pair of scissors to cut a piece of the plant. It would help if you did it on the morning of your moving day. The part should be healthy and one that can be re-grown. Keep in mind that not all plants are propagated the same way.  

Moving a part of the plant is simpler than risking the entire plant. After cutting it:

  1. Wrap it with a damp paper towel and secure it in a container.

  2. Ensure the paper towel is moist when moving.

  3. Propagate the cutting once you arrive in the new home.

9. A long-distance move

If it is a long-distance move, there are several steps you need to take. For instance, you need to engage the agriculture department to move your plant. Several countries ban the moving of plants. Therefore, you need to seek their clearance before packing and moving your plants.

10. Unpack the plant as once you arrive

Together with pets, it would help if you unpacked your plants as soon as you arrived in your new home. Take the plants out of the box and ensure you handle them with care. Please keep them in darker lit places before taking them to brighter light. This will give them a chance to adjust to the new place.


Moving is a serious process that comes with several challenges. It is even more challenging when moving plants. But if you can follow the above tips, you can be sure to pack and move your plants smoothly.