How to Move House Plants to a New Home

Moving requires paying attention to lots of different areas: kids, pets, home offices, and more. But one thing people often forget to plan for until the very last minute are their houseplants. As a Realtor in the Arlington, Virginia area, I’ve helped clients with ideas for protecting and moving their beloved houseplants whether it’s across town or across the country. After all, there’s nothing that makes a new house feel like home than having a plant or succulent that you’ve nurtured and enjoyed for years.

Indoor plants, always popular in the past, have experienced an explosion in popularity the last few years with the pandemic inspiring many to find ways to improve their surroundings at home. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Americans spent 18.7 percent more on gardening-related items in 2020 than they did in 2019 — an increase of $8.5 billion.

You can also see this rise in houseplant enthusiasm throughout social media, for example:

  • Facebook: One group (House Plant Hobbyist) has more than 500,000 members
  • Reddit: The r/houseplants subreddit has over 950,000 members
  • TikTok: The #plantsoftiktok hashtag has reached over 5 billion views

In fact, house plants have gotten so big that in 2021 “how to move with plants” was Googled more than “how to move with kids” or “how to move with pets.

As you’re getting ready to move to a new home, here are a few tips for preparing, packing, and transporting your favorite house plants to their new location. Keep in mind that many moving companies do not transport plants, so it’s best to plan to move them in your own vehicle.

Long distance moves: If you’re traveling overnight, bring plants inside with you if temperatures dip too low. During the day make sure they are shaded and get plenty of air if it’s very hot. If you’re traveling for more than a day, be sure to check their soil to see if they need water.

Transporting small house plants: These are easiest to move, as you can simply place multiple smaller plants in their containers inside a larger open box for transportation. Fill gaps between pots with bunches of paper to prevent them from moving or falling over.

Large house plants: First, you’ll want to pack material such as paper or sphagnum moss around the base of the plant to keep the soil from coming out. Wrap pots with padded packing paper to protect them and secure with twine. That way if you have to move the plant on its side or at an angle, the soil won’t fall out.

Moving during cold temperatures: If it’s cold on moving day, wrap your plants in newspaper or very light blankets or coverings for protection and warmth. Many house plants are sensitive to temperature changes, so you want to keep them as stable as possible. Try to load them into your car into the garage if you can, to also minimize exposure to freezing temperatures.

I hope these tips help you feel confident that you’re taking care of your plants and make this part of your moving journey less stressful. If you’re buying or selling in the Arlington, Virginia area and would like more insight into our market or moving advice, feel free to reach out to me at 703-593-6320, I’m here to help.