Putting Down Roots – Moving Your Plants With Maximum Success

When moving home, we tend to think of the stress of moving in terms of packing, possessions and pets but our beloved plants can become similarly stressed!

Pot plants tend to be easier to move as they’re portable, easy to carry and if larger or heavier can always be carted back and forth with a trolley or hand truck. But no matter how attached we are to some of our plants and shrubs, there are some that want to stubbornly stay put. These include many native shrubs. Before digging up a shrub, it’s worthwhile checking on the likelihood of its success in surviving a transplant.

If you are moving palms, carefully tie the fronds together, working upwards from the trunk. This protects them and the all important growth spike in the centre. Break that and it’s compost.

If you are contemplating transplanting plants to your new home, you need to show a little love a few days before, watering and treating with your plants with a boost of seaweed fertiliser. Mark a North point on your plant with string or ribbon on one of the branches and align this in the new position to avoid potential burning.

For larger plants, carefully dig a trench around the root zone, pruning any roots cleanly. Dig underneath the root ball, lifting until it feels free. Wrap the root ball in hessian, tarpaulin or old sheet and tie firmly to hold the soil together.

At the new site dig a hole that’s at least twice the size of the root ball in circumference. Backfill carefully and water in well, ensuring no air pockets. Apply a thick layer of mulch to conserve water.

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