moving house with plants

Your Handy Guide to Moving With Plants

In general, moving with plants is pretty simple and straightforward when it comes to short-distance or intrastate relocation. However, transporting plants interstate is a different matter altogether. Either way, transporting plants requires planning and preparation, just like the other items your moving

Here, we’ll share some useful tips to make the moving process with plants a success – whether you’re relocating interstate or within the same state.

Should You Move With Plants?

Australia is very strict when it comes to moving plants, fresh produce, animals and animal products, soil, recreational, gardening, and agricultural equipment. The stringent quarantine laws of the country are part of the government’s strategy to protect its precious flora and fauna and keep pests and diseases under control, and this is why these guidelines also apply to interstate moves. Before you consider moving plants, ensure you’ve done plenty of research ahead of time.

Since each state has its own set of quarantine entry conditions, it’s best to contact the relevant state authority prior to your move.

For example, in Western Australia, you need to complete the Unaccompanied Personal Effects Declaration Quarantine WA form. Meanwhile, in Queensland, you may be required to present a biosecurity certificate when moving any of the aforementioned restricted items, whether you are moving the items within or out of Queensland and into another state or territory.

Questions to Help You Decide on Whether You Should Take Your Plants

Deciding on whether you should take or leave your beloved plants behind isn’t easy, especially if you’re a green thumb who loves gardening or plants in general.

To help with your decision making, answer these questions carefully and truthfully:

How big is the plant?

Larger plants could mean more work and costs due to the weight of the root ball than smaller potted plants. For large plants, it’s likely more cost-effective to leave them behind.

Is it a special variety or rare plant?

If the same plant is available with the local nursery in your new neighborhood, you might want to get another plant instead of transporting it in a moving truck to your new home.

Will it thrive in the new climate?

Moving outdoor plants out of the area whose climate they’ve gotten accustomed to can be disadvantageous. Consider the amount of rainfall and summer heat in your new environment.

Can you take proper care of the plant in the new location?

Reflect on what your lifestyle will be like in your new place. Some plants need lots of care, so these may get too difficult to manage if you’re always busy.

Do you have space for your plants in your new garden?

Consider how much space you’ll have at your new home. All the plants you’re taking with you should have a ready place in your new garden.

Preparing Plants for a Move

To ensure your plants are kept healthy enough for a move and are given the best chance to survive – especially when relocating long-distance or interstate – preparing them well in advance is absolutely necessary.

Use the following steps and tips as a guide in preparing your plants for a move:

  • Treat your plants for pests and disease months or weeks before the move.
  • Dig a trench around the plant root system using the extent of the plant leaves as a guide. Do this a few months prior to the move.
  • Use sand or compost to fill the trench.
  • Water the root area between the trunk or stem and the trench.
  • Apply seaweed tonic every 2-3 weeks to keep the plant healthy.
  • At least two days before moving day, give your plants a good soaking with water to ensure proper drainage.
  • As much as possible, pack smaller or hanging pot plants in boxes prior to the move to keep them well protected and make moving them so much easier. If you’re working with interstate removalists like Relocations WA, the crew can take care of handling the larger plants.

On Moving Day

During the move, consider the following tips that you can take advantage of on moving day.

  • On moving day, dig around and beneath the plant. If it’s too hot on the day of your move, place wet, scrunched-up newspaper around the leaves.
  • Place the root ball on a large plastic sheet, tarp or some hessian and secure the root system.
  • If space is a problem, trim or prune the excess foliage and dead leaves – but be careful to not over-prune, as that can weaken the plant significantly.
  • If you want to place the plant in a pot, shake off the soil or wash the root system clean and trim broken or damaged roots.
  • Water the plant well and spray on some antitranspirant on the plant to prevent water loss.
  • If possible, keep the plant in a shaded cool area to minimise stress on the plant during your move.

Once You Arrive at Your New Home:

You’ve made it to your new house! Here’s what to do with your plants after arriving.

  • The moment your plants arrive at your new home, remove the plastic cover immediately. Take out all plants from their boxes. Water the plants and give them some plant food.
  • For temporarily transplanted plants, you may repot plants back to their original pots about a week after your move to the new place.
  • Set down the plants in a shaded area that’s also protected from the wind and extreme temperatures (heat or cold) in the new location. You may also use a temporary cover, screen or shade cloth to protect the plants.
  • Continue applying some seaweed tonic every few weeks.
  • Monitor your plants and give them more water when it’s hot, dry or windy.
  • If you have rare or valuable plants, it may be better to ask for help from a landscape contractor, as they’re the best people for the job. If some plants seem to be having a hard time adjusting to their new environment, get help from your local nursery.

Move With Relocations WA

A smooth, stress-free move with your plants is possible with proper planning. preparation and a moving checklist. This way, you won’t miss a thing. For help with transporting plants interstate, please contact Relocations WA.

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