How to move plants?

Whether you’re transplanting new garden plants from nursery pots, or moving a plant to a different spot in your garden, there are a few simple steps to follow to minimize transplant shock. In this post, I’ll give you details about when to transplant perennials, and show you exactly how to transplant a plant step-by-step.

Transplanting is hard on plants, and most plants will go into some form of transplant shock after they’re moved. Following the steps below will help minimize the amount of shock a plant will suffer, and allow the plant to recover quickly after being transplanted.


What Is Plant Transplant Shock?

As I mentioned above, transplanting is hard on plants, and some plants will handle it better than others. Plants wilting after transplant is usually the first sign of transplant shock.

Transplant shock can occur when transplanting plants from ground to ground or when transplanting them from pots. Severe transplant shock can kill a plant, so it’s best to take the proper steps to avoid it.

The first step in avoiding transplant shock is to move perennials at the right time. Then follow the steps below to minimize shock, and ensure your plants will make a full recovery.

When Is The Best Time To Transplant Plants

The best time to plant perennials is in the spring before the heat of summer, or in the fall once the weather starts to cool down.

Wait to move flowering plants until after they’re done blooming if possible. Transplanting flowers right before they bloom can cause the flower buds to drop from the plant, or result in poor flowering.

The best time of day to transplant plants is in the early morning or evening, especially when transplanting plants in summer. Avoid planting them in the afternoon when the sun is at it’s hottest. Also cool, overcast days when there’s rain in the forecast are the best days to transplant a plant.

How To Transplant A Plant In Your Garden

Once you determine the best time to move perennials in your garden, be sure to follow these steps for how to transplant plants outside to minimize plant shock, and ensure your plants will thrive in their new location.

The basic steps are the same whether you’re transplanting perennials or you’re transferring plants from a pot into the garden.

Step 1: Dig the new planting hole first – Before you start digging up plants, make sure you have the new spot picked out, and have the new hole ready and waiting. The faster you transplant a plant into the ground, the less chance there is for transplant shock.

Dig the new hole larger and deeper than the plants rootball or the pot the plant came in. Doing this will loosen up the soil and will allow the roots to take hold easier.

Dig new hole before transplanting plants

Step 2: Fill the planting hole with water – Next, fill the new hole with water and let it soak in a bit. If all the water soaks in really fast, then fill the hole again to ensure the soil is nice and damp.

On the flip side, you don’t want your plant floating on top of the water, otherwise it will sink too deep once it settles. So be sure most of the water in the hole has been absorbed before you put a plant into it.

Fill planting hole with water to minimize transplant shock

Step 3: Dig up the plant – If you’re transplanting new garden plants from pots, you can skip to step 4. But, if you’re transplanting plants from ground to ground, keep reading.

Next you’ll want to dig up the plant allowing plenty of space around the roots. Keep your shovel straight up and down, rather than angling it towards the roots of the plant to avoid cutting into the rootball.

If you want to divide the plant, now is the best time to do it. Many perennial plants can be divided by cutting the rootball with a shovel or sharp knife. Just be sure you have planting holes (or pots) ready to go for each division before splitting the plant.

Note that not all perennials like to be split at the rootball, so it’s best to research the plant you want to divide before you dig it up.

Try not to damage roots when digging and moving perennials

Step 4: Transfer the plant to the new planting hole – As soon as you’re done digging up the plant, move it directly to it’s new spot. Place the plant into the new hole at the same level it was in the old hole or pot. Fill the hole with dirt until the rootball is completely covered.

Do not allow any of the rootball to stick out above the dirt, this can act like a wick and pull moisture away from the roots.

Plants wilting after transplant

Step 5: Water the plant well – Right after you’re done transplanting the plant, be sure to give it a good drink of water, and then continue watering it well for a few days after transplant. Ensuring plants have ample water after moving them will help to minimize transplant shock.

Why Do Plants Wilt When Transplanted?

Remember above when I said that the first sign of transplant shock is plants wilting after transplant. Don’t panic! It doesn’t mean your plant is going to die. This is totally normal for many plants, and sometimes it just can’t be avoided.

Some plants simply hate to be transplanted, and they will droop and wilt no matter how well you follow the steps above for how to transplant a plant.

Most plants should pop back within a few days. Just be sure to keep them well watered, and avoid fertilizing until the plant has recovered.

Perennial plant recovered from plant shock after transplant

Whether you have a large plant relocation project planned, or simply want to add a few new plants to your garden, it’s important to understand the best way to transplant plants.

Just remember to wait for the best time to transplant perennials, and follow the steps above for how to transplant a plant, and you shouldn’t lose any plants to transplant shock.

More Gardening Tips You Might Enjoy

  • Annuals vs Perennials: What’s The Difference?
  • How To Determine Sun Exposure In Your Garden

Share your tips for how to transplant a plant in the garden in the comments section below.

Transporting Trees from the Nursery to Your Home

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Trees are one of the largest investments you’ll make in your landscape – not only price-wise, but also size-wise.

Make sure your investment travels safely from the nursery to its permanent location.

Wrap the leafy canopy of deciduous trees and evergreens to prevent drying on the ride home. Wrap the trunk with fabric or carpet to prevent rubbing on the tailgate or trunk of the tree. And secure the tree in place.

Once you arrive home, ask for help removing the tree from your vehicle. Use a board to create a ramp and slide the tree out of the truck, preferably next to the planting hole. Or carefully lift and place the tree in a wheelbarrow and drive it over to the planting location.

And once the tree is unloaded, continue to handle it with care. Ask for help and always move the tree by the rootball, not the trunk. Your extra effort will be rewarded with a long-lived tree.

A bit more information: No wheelbarrow or garden cart? Take a look in your garage or shed for options. Put old wagons and dollies to work in the garden. Or tie a rope to an old saucer sled to drag plants, mulch and other heavy items from one area of the landscape to another.

My sister called me yesterday afternoon to ask about a new magnolia she purchased at a nursery. She was planning to pick it up today, and wanted to know how to handle the transportation in her mini-van. This was an excellent question to ask. The last thing you want to do is damage your new plant purchase, so here are a few tips and reminders on what to do when you move your plant from the garden center to your home.

Balled and Burlapped B&B) tree example


It may sound funny, but you may want to grab a couple old pillows and a thick blanket, or a tarp along with some bungee cords or rope, before you head to the garden center. The main thing you want to do for trees is protect its bark and foliage during travel. Bark is like your skin, overlaying the veins in your body. On trees, bark protects the cambium layer responsible for transporting water and nutrients in the tree, much like how veins move blood in our bodies.

If the bark gets rubbed, broken, bruised, or nicked, it can prohibit the passage of nutrients and create a perfect place for insects and diseases to settle into your tree. When you place or lay your tree in a van, car (which I’ve seen done for small trees), or inside the back of your pickup truck, be careful to not nick the bark. Don’t allow the tree to roll around in the vehicle, hitting something like tools, or your seats. Damage on the bark, or the trunk for that matter, is a leading cause of death in trees. Sometimes wounds will heal but it can make the tree’s appearance not as lovely as you had imagined.


As for the foliage on the top of the tree, it should not be exposed to wind as you drive home. If you put the tree in the back of your pickup truck, be sure to protect the foliage somehow. A light bed sheet works well, wrapped like a hair net – or the nursery may have some type of light material to offer you to protect the foliage. Wind will shred the leaves and dry them out. Even if you drive carefully and slowly like Grandma. This is also true with evergreen shrubs susceptible to drying winds. It is best to cover the foliage on its journey to your home in a vehicle if exposed.

Container Grown Tree Example


If you are bringing home perennials or annuals in pots, grab a cardboard box or plastic milk crate to insert the pots into your vehicle as you travel so they won’t topple over in your car. Most nurseries offer a plastic liner to protect your car seats from the wet base of pots, but you may want to bring along a sheet as well if you have one on hand. They can be handy. Inside the vehicle, perennials and annuals are protected from strong winds, unless you drive a convertible, so they will be okay. And in the back of a pickup truck, sometimes this is okay because they are lower than the top of the pickup truck’s bed. But if you stop somewhere on your travels, and plants are inside your vehicle, don’t let them sit in the heat for too long.


Mostly likely, if you are out and about shopping for plants, you will also be stopping somewhere for another errand or to have lunch. If you have your tree, perennials, or annuals “in the car” – and plan to stop for a while, open up your windows slightly to allow some ventilation in the car. Although many plants like the warmth, scolding hot temperatures will stress out the plants, and dry out the soil in the pot. Overheating your plants is like overheating a dog in the car, it can lead to suffering and even death! Remember this for plants you may have put in the trunk of your car too. If stopping for more than 15 minutes on a hot day, I wouldn’t leave them baking in the car’s trunk like an oven. They will get weak and withered, and potentially at a permanent wilting point – unable to recover. You may not either, once you learned you fried your investment.

Pick it up


You should not lift a tree by its trunk at the base or mid-way on the trunk. You might not only hurt the tree, but hurt yourself too, especially if the tree is balled and burlapped. B&B trees are dug up from the field with the soil base around the roots. They are very heavy compared to container grown trees. With a B&B tree, you probably will need help to load and transport the tree, and unload it at home. Big B&B trees are often better planted by an expert – and many nurseries offer this service.

If a container grown tree, it is much better to lift it by the container, and then place it carefully on a hand truck or in a wheel barrel to move the tree to its holding location or planting location in your yard. Don’t leave your new tree or perennials in the wrong place if you don’t plan to plant it in the ground right away. There are two things you must remember. Some trees and shrubs will be top heavy if grown in a container, and the wind can topple it over. And the second thing, is they can dry out in pots, so you must also remember to water them.

Last year, one of my clients took home two beautiful Kwanzan cherry trees for a park installation. She placed the trees by her picnic table to wait until she could go plant them. The next day happened to be a very windy day. While she was at work, the wind had tossed one of the trees against the table repeatedly, rubbing away the bark and creating a good sized wound. We decided to plant the tree anyways, and hope for the best. Looking it over this spring, the wound is healing nicely, but you can visibly see the damage done, plus the tree doesn’t match the other one as a result.

A good tip is to insert the container into another bigger and heavier empty pot or box at home to stabilize the tree until you are ready to plant it in the ground. Or put some weighted object, like large rocks or cement blocks around the outside of the pot base to keep it in place in the event of a windy gust. Also, put the plant where there is a bit of shade to protect it from harsh sun until you are ready to plant it. And also very important – don’t forget to water it from time to time if you don’t plant it right away, especially if you placed it on pavement where the pot can get hot quickly.

On your planting day, if you have several trees or plants to plant, line them out into their permanent positions in your landscape, but don’t remove them from their pots until you are ready to place them into the planting holes. Leaving exposed roots could potentially dry out the roots too.

Once planted, another good reminder is to be careful when mowing your lawn or weed whacking nearby so you don’t nick the bark once you have successfully planted it in your landscape. Something I have to remind my husband every year when he breaks out the mower!

So follow these guidelines, turn up the tunes while traveling home from the nursery, and rest assured all will be safe when you arrive home!

Container Crazy Cathy T

860-977-9473 (cell)

How To Move Plants & Small Trees When Moving or Relocating

Posted by administrator on October 27, 2016 in News and Tips | Comments Off on How To Move Plants & Small Trees When Moving or Relocating

You are moving and would like to take your plants with you. Here are some tips on how you can do this and protect your plants from damage in the process.

If you are only moving a short distance or long distance. There are way you can protect your plants and small trees from damage. These are generally the last things to be moved. Being prepared before the moving day will make the process a lot easier. Especially if you have a lot of plants to move. Here are some tips on How To Move Plants & Small Trees when moving or relocating.

Check with the removal company on transporting your plants. Some removal companies may not let you transport them on the truck. So you may have to make alternative arrangement to get them to the new location. Give them as much information about the plants as you can.

Things you need. Boxes or Plastic crates or Styrofoam Boxes Paper or Plastic Sheets .

For Cuttings you will need the following. Plastic Containers Plastic Bags, Potting Mix, Wooden Chopsticks.

For Small Local Moves With Small Or Medium Plants.

    1. Go to the local nursery and pick up some plant boxes. (sometimes they may have some to give away from their deliveries) Make sure they are strong and durable. You can even use plastic crates or Styrofoam Boxes if you can’t get the boxes.
    2. Get these well in advance of your move. Spray them lightly with bug spray and let them sit outside to kill any bugs or insects they may have from previous plants.
    3. Make sure your plants are bug free so they will not transfer to any other plants that will be packed with them. Cut off any dead leaves. Prune back to make the transport a lot easier
    4. The day before you move or even on the day of the move. Cover the bottom of the box with newspaper or butchers paper
    5. Drain any water you have in the pot plants and place in the box or plastic creates. You maybe better of doing this on a table so its easier to lift and transport either to your car or removal truck. Pack crunched up paper around the pots so they will be less likely to slide around in the box
    6. Before you lift the box or crate check the weight so its not to heavy and make sure the path way is clear for you to move. So you don’t trip over anything along the way.

How To Move Larger Plants and Pots.

Prune back and dead leave or over hanging branches.

  1. If you have time you maybe better of replanting these in plastic pots rather then ceramic. Will help make these a little lighter. Or use a trolley if they are heavy
  2. Once again drain any water in the pot. Place the pot in a plastic bag. Either a shopping bag or kitchen tidy bag. Just in case the pot is damaged in transit. This will save the soil going everywhere and will keep it in the bag.
  3. You can tape the bag. Or use string and tie it to the truck of the plant if its strong enough. Make sure the tape is around the plastic bag and not the truck
  4. Pack them well with paper in the box around the base of the pot. So the pot does not move while in transit and damage your plant.
  5. If you can not pack these in a box if they are not to big. Make sure the base is in a plastic bag. Just in case there is a accident and the pot break while in transit
  6. You can always wrap them either in a sheet or paper to protect the leaves and branches.
  7. Once you have moved place these in a cool place till you have time to move them where you would like to go. Don’t forget to water them when you have time.

If its a hot or cold day. Don’t leave them sitting in your car or removal truck for to long. This will do more harm then good. Get them out of the car or truck as soon as you can. Place in a cool area and give them some water.

Moving Long Distance with Trees and Plants

Prepare them for transport by pruning and cutting off branches and dead leaves
  1. Have them packed securely as not to move around in the car. Use bricks or pieces of wood to secure them while they are in transit.
  2. If your small tress and plants are with you and you are moving a long distance. Say a day or two. You maybe better off taking the plants out of your car or trailer if you are staying somewhere over night. Make sure they can get some light especially if they are in boxes and in the car for a few days. Don’t place them under the air conditioner.
  3. Check that they are not in direct sunlight for to long. So if need be place a sheet over them as protection while in transit
  4. Make sure your car does not get to hot nor to cold. As this can damage your plants. Park in the shade at break stops and leave your windows down so they can get some fresh air.
  5. Once you arrive in your new home. Move them carefully to one side in the shade. Then water them.
  6. This will give you time to unload everything else and work out where you would like to put them

Moving to a different state or country.

Check to see what you can and can’t take with you. For example you can not take fruit and some plants to Broken Hill. This will save you receiving a huge fine and destroying the plants in the process.

Moving larger Plants or Trees can be a lot harder then expected. You maybe better selling them or giving them away

We recently had a tree (Ponytail) in our front yard that we sold on Gumtree It was bigger then both my husband and the person who brought it from us expected.

In the end they got it out. With a local crane company. The plant is now relocated just cost a bit more then expected for the buyer.

If the Tree or Plant does have special meaning Have the professionals come in to do this for you. They will have the right equipment and experience to get the job done.

You can post an ad on Gumtree or donate them to local school if they are suitable. There may also be pages on facebook in your local area where you can place a as well.

Tips Getting Cuttings From Your Plants

Here are some tips in getting cuttings and starting again.

  1. Make sure your plant is healthy before you take a cutting from it. Using the secateurs. Remove the lower leaves
  2. To be sure of success start with a healthy piece of plant and use clean, sterile materials from secateurs to pot and propagating mix. Put cuttings into a pot filled with a well-drained propagating, which can be bought at the nursery, Use a mix of coco peat and propagating sand. Or just plain potting mix will do if you plan to repot asap.
  3. To prepare the cutting, remove the lower leaves and cut beneath a node using sharp secateurs. Snip off any buds, flowers and also remove large leaves.
  4. Before planting, dip the base of the cutting in a rooting hormone gel or powder. Use a chopstick or even a pencil to make a hole in the mix in which to insert the cutting. This reduces damage to the base of the cutting by forcing in the mix
  5. Push it gently down into the mix so there are several nodes in the soil. You can put several cuttings in a single pot. Depending on the size. Water your cuttings well. Make sure you pop a label with the plant name and date written on it as a record. So you know what you have.
  6. To provide a small greenhouse for your cuttings to grow. Use either pieces of branches. more chopsticks or strong wire to create a support for a plastic bag. So its does not touch your plants. Once every thing is done place the container in a plastic bag and tie up the end. As to make a mini greenhouse for your plants to grow.
For more information I found this clip useful on You tube. Remember the Months will be different in your Country As he is in America

Courtesy Mikes Backyard Nursery

Thank you for taking the time to read through our Blog on How To Move Plants & Small Trees When Moving or Relocating. If we can assist you with anything at all. Please let us know be more then happy to answer any question you may have on Moving

Kind Regards

Roxann Coffey

If you are after Moving Boxes and Packing Supplies Contact BOX EM UP. We have a range of Cardboard Boxes and Packaging Products to help you with your relocation. Call 0411676626 or email [email protected] with any questions you may have.

Moving Plants To Another Home: How To Relocate Plants Safely

Perhaps you have just found out that you need to move, and a pang of sadness hits you when you gaze out over all of your beautiful flowers, shrubs and trees in your garden. You remember how much time and effort you have put into your gardens and you wonder if moving your plants to another home is even something that can be done.

Many times, it’s possible to relocate some of your dearest plants to your new home if it is done at the right time and with the right amount of attention. Of course, you will have to make sure that whoever purchased your home is okay with you taking a little bit of your garden with you.

When to Move Plants

If possible, it’s best to move perennials during the early spring and fall when temperatures are not overly warm. The hot summer months, when weather is dry, are the worst times to attempt relocation. Plants become quickly stressed when removed from the soil during this time. It is optimal to wait until the winter to move trees and shrubs. However, if the season has been particularly wet, a late spring or summer move may be possible.

How to Relocate Plants

Be sure to get as much root as possible when digging plants. The soil will help to protect the plants during the move. Place plants in pots with plenty of room, and be sure that the soil is amply moist. Wrap roots of large plants, shrubs and trees in burlap.

Transporting Plants to Another Location

If you must move plants during the summer, keep them out of the sun and wind. The root ball must be kept moist and replanting as soon as possible is advised. It is also wise to go ahead and prepare the new planting site before you arrive so that your plants can go in the ground as soon as possible.

If you move plants during the fall or winter, it isn’t quite as critical to move so fast; however, the sooner the better. Consider transporting flowers, shrubs and trees in a closed vehicle, such as a truck, to avoid wind damage. If you will be traveling some distance, check the moisture levels of plants when you stop.

Care of Relocated Plants

Once you arrive at your destination, check all plants for damage. Snip off broken leaves or branches using a clean pair of garden pruners. Get the plants into their new home as quickly as possible. It’s best to transplant early in the morning on an overcast day, especially in the summer months.

New transplants require tender loving care. Be sure to provide plenty of water. If you transplant during a hot period, plants will most likely experience some shock and may wilt. If you can, protect transplants from the hot sun while they establish. A 4-inch layer of mulch will help to retain moisture.

Give your plants several weeks to become adapted to their new home.

You’ve spent months, possibly years, cultivating a beautiful garden. But does moving mean that you have to leave it all behind? Thankfully, no. With some smart thinking and careful planning you can safely transport your beloved plants to your new home and help them thrive there, provided the conditions are right.

It’s always a little bit risky to move your garden. Plants are temperamental in even the best of circumstances, and abrupt changes in light, temperature, or other conditions can be hard on them. But they’re also a part of your home and the result of a lot of hard work – it makes sense to at least try, especially if you don’t think that the person who will be moving into your home is going to want to care for them.

But before we get into how to move plants: a caveat. Some plants, such as trees and in-ground perennials, are expected to stay at your home if you sell. It’s within the buyer’s right to expect they’ll be getting the main plants of a property with their purchase, so if you are planning to take something big – say, a tree that’s sentimental to you – you will have to notify the buyer in writing about your plan, and possibly also replace it with a tree of similar size. The same goes for flowers.

As for your vegetable garden, that’s all yours. Crops are considered personal property, and are fine for the seller to take.

Once you’ve figured out what plants you can and will be taking, you’ll need to dig into the details of how to transport them safely. Take the care to do it right though, and you’ll be able to enjoy the fruits of your labor in your new home. Here are some tips to help you along the way.

Factor in the season

It’s never a great idea to move your plants in the height of summer, when temperatures are hot, the air is dry, and the sun is strong. Exposed roots are especially vulnerable to the damaging variables of warmer months. It is possible to successfully move your plants in the summer, but you will have to take extra precautions to ensure that your plants are properly watered and transported, and that roots are never left bare in the sun. If you have control over when you move and want to make the process easier, arrange to move in any of the other seasons, which have more favorable conditions for transporting plants.

Hydrate plants before uprooting them

A dry plant is at a major disadvantage when it comes to weathering the stress of a move. The night before you plan to dig up your plants, give them a deep soak that will allow water to permeate into the soil and roots. You don’t want to drown them, but you do want to heavily water them so that the plants have water to hold on to during the uprooting process. It’s a good idea to get into the practice of regularly deep soaking your plants in the weeks and months leading up to your move, since a once-a-week deep soaking means a healthier plant than more frequent shallow soakings. And make sure to do that last deep soak at night, when less water will evaporate.

Give your plants a trim

To help your plants conserve energy during the move, make sure they’re as healthy as possibly. One of the best ways to do this is to trim all dead or excess stems and leaves so that the plant isn’t wasting any valuable energy on parts it doesn’t need. You’ve probably been trimming your plants anyway, but before you move give them a final once over and remove anything that doesn’t have to be there.

Uproot with care

The uprooting stage will be the first major stressor to your plant in the moving process. To ease the transition, water your plants again before digging them up, even though they should still be moist from the deep soak the night before. Then use a trowel to dig a ring around the plant, being sure to go wide enough that you don’t risk cutting through any root. Remove the plant from the earth, keeping as much soil attached to the roots as you can. Immediately upon uprooting the plant, place it in a pot with soil (and water it again) or wrap the base of the plant (the roots and soil) in a damp burlap sack.

Re-plant as quickly as possible

Try to take your plants with you in your car if possible. If they do have to go on the moving truck, make sure they are packed last so that you can get them off immediately upon arrival.

And now comes the most crucial part: no matter if you’re moving tomato plants or rose bushes, have a plan in place for getting them back in the ground as soon as possible. If you haven’t already planned exactly where each plant is going to go (and it’s okay if you haven’t), quickly dig a temporary trench that you can use to house the plants until they’re ready to go to their permanent places. Water the trench heavily before transporting your plants into it, and mix wood chips in with the soil to help the area retain water. Place the plants into the watered hole (it should be more mud than dirt) and cover halfway with fresh soil. Water the soil, allowing it to soak through, and then fill the rest of the hole with dirt and water again. Make sure the soil isn’t too compact, which will restrict air flow.

Reduce stress on the transplants

While your plants are settling in to their new yard, take extra steps to limit stress from the environment. You’ll want to shade the plants from direct sunlight for at least the first couple of days while they adjust to the conditions of their new home, and you’ll also want to be sure to water them every day while they regain strength. If you notice plants are wilting, check the soil a few inches down and make sure it’s not dry, which would suggest you’re not watering enough. When you – and they – are ready, you’ll be able to transport them one last time to their final spot.

No matter how much care you take, moving your plants is always going to take a bit of luck, so don’t be alarmed if you lose a couple plants along the way. With proper precautions and quick timing, however, you should be able to successfully replant your garden at your new residence, roots and all.

How To Transplant Grass Without Much Effort

In my lawn, I have placed a picnic table with some chairs in a corner of my lawn and I intentionally did not plant grass seed in that area. After a few months, beautiful grass has started to grow in the area. The grass has grown to be so beautiful that I decided to transfer it to an area still without grass. My journey how to transplant grass started.

​Transplanting grass is definitely feasible and not an extremely difficult task. You will need to do some advance planning, though. First things first. The day you choose to transplant grass should be a cloudy day as grass will not dry out.

How To Transplant Grass

​Here are the step by step instructions on how to transplant grass.

Step 1

Prepare the area where you are going to transplant the grass. Remove all rocks and debris. Remove any plant as well. Remove sod and soil up to 6 inches deep. Set the soil aside.

Step 2​

Fertilize the remaining soil with a nitrogen rich fertilizer. Apply only ½ of what is indicated in the package instructions. Your intention is to boost the roots and not to burn them.

Step 3​

Rake the area to level it. Be careful not to mix the soil you set aside.

Step 4 ​

Water the area up to several inches deep. Test the moisture of the soil by digging a hand shovel into the ground.

Step 5​

With a spade or a shovel, remove the grass you wish to transplant. Drive the spade or shovel about 3 to 4 inches to the ground.

Step 6​

Remove the grass in strips (the size of the shovel or spade’s width).

Step 7​

Create a line on both sides making sure the entire strip is completely detached from the ground. Position the shovel or spade under one side of the strip, push it down until the roots are detached from the ground. Keep on pushing the shovel or spade until the entire strip is removed from the ground.

Step 8​

Roll the detached strip of grass and transport it to the destined area. Do the same for the rest of the strips you are going to remove.

Step 9​

Position the rolled strips on the surface of the existing sod in the lawn. Gently unroll the grass strip. If you are transplanting a lot of grass strips, space them so they are not on top of each other.

Step 10​

Lay each grass strip on the ground. Pack the roots to the existing soil by rolling a lawn roller over the newly transplanted grass. Use a lawn roller with a water reservoir so you can water the new grass as you transplant them. This will help connect the roots of the new grass with the existing soil.

Step 11​

When all the strips to be transplanted are in the new area, water them. Make sure they are all soaked from the sod all the way to the original dirt. This will help in connecting the soils so they become one. It will also keep the newly planted grass to be moist and enhance their growth.

Step 12

On the first week, water the newly transplanted grass for 15 minutes. Water twice a day if it is extremely hot (900F).

Step 13​

Fill the area where you detached the sod with the soil.

Step 14​

Start mowing your lawn as soon as the newly transplanted sod is taller by 1/3 than the recommended height. After many aforementioned steps, you may get a little bit tired and do not want to do anything else at all. A corded lawn mower should help you in this case because of its cutting power and saving time.
Read more: What To Consider When Choosing The Best Corded Electric Lawn Mower

If you do the above mentioned steps on how to transplant grass, what you have is what you desire. This is why you should transplant grass instead of starting from scratch and planting grass seeds.

Here is a video about Transplanting Grass From The Clover Lawn:


Top Tips for Transplanting Sod

A sod cutting machine, rentable by the day, makes quick work of transplanting. Photo: Flickr / jcelene

It’s been about 18 months since we moved into our house, but only recently have we begun to landscape beyond the basic builder’s package. A designer helped us formulate a plan that we intend to roll out in stages over the next several years. This spring, we initiated phase one: creating more strategically placed planting beds. That meant removing sod—a LOT of sod.

Sod is expensive to install and, surprisingly, expensive to remove. Even if you rent a sod cutting machine, the work is still labor-intensive and time-consuming. Not to mention that once you have the sod lifted, it must be hauled away and dumped somewhere—at a price, of course.

Related: Artificial Turf: 7 Reasons to Consider the New “Grass” Alternative

Our landscape designer suggested that we see if anyone nearby might want to re-use our sod. So I put the word out on our neighborhood Facebook page. Within 30 minutes, I had a taker: neighbors Pam and Ray, who had less than satisfactory success seeding their lawn upon moving into a home just blocks away.

I was beyond delighted. For one, the time and money we saved in not having to haul and dump the sod could instead go to cutting more planting beds. More than that, I absolutely hate to waste anything and was thrilled that someone could use the perfectly good grass.

Pam and Ray were ecstatic, too, when they saw an enormous pile of sod rolled up at the edge of our yard. It took several trips in Ray’s pickup truck, but our “old” sod is now enjoying a “new” home.

Our neighbor, Ray, prepped the area by roto-tilling and putting down lime. Photo: Flickr / jcelene

While this was a somewhat unconventional application—laying sod over existing grass—the method used by Pam and Ray ultimately worked for them. Here’s their advice:

1. Rough up the current ground cover. The roots from the sod need to make contact with dirt, so use a rototiller or similar tool to expose the soil beneath.

2. Add some lime. Lime promotes lawn health by providing nutrients and improving soil structure. Because lime is absorbed slowly, add it prior to the sod.

3. Fill in the gaps. After fitting the sod pieces closely together, cutting and trimming as needed, fill in the joints with a mixture of soil and grass seed.

4. Compact and water. Compact the sod using a roller—or by driving over the installation with a pickup truck! Water for 20 minutes in the early morning (before the sun gets too high) and 20 minutes in the evening (after the sun has set).

A month later, the sod we would have sent to some refuse center is living on and looking great. Both we and our neighbors couldn’t be happier about that.

For more on lawns, consider:

Top 5 Tips for a Greener Lawn
Bob Vila Radio: Lawn Care Hell
Keep Off the Grass: 5 Traditional Lawn Alternatives

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