Moving across state lines

Moving is an exciting opportunity to explore new places and meet new people, but you may need to leave your plants behind if you cross state lines. The laws that regulate transporting houseplants are in place to protect native species from pests and disease. Learning the current regulations in your destination state is the simplest way to decide whether you can bring your plants when you move.

Check State Regulations

You can find the regulations for your new state online by visiting the National Plant Board, or you can contact the Department of Agriculture for information about transporting plants across state lines. Regulations common to most states include the following:

  • Citrus trees shouldn’t be transported to a new location, even if you are moving to a new home within the same city. You should also avoid taking citrus fruits, seeds, and cuttings.
  • Your plants may be quarantined to prevent the spread of invasive fire ants or harmful nematodes.
  • Inspections may be required when moving houseplants to a new state. Local organizations like the Department of Agriculture typically perform these checks.
  • Nearly all states prohibit transporting invasive species and noxious weeds. For instance, Ohio regulations prohibit carrying some types of honeysuckle into the state to preserve resources for native species.
  • Houseplants must be potted in commercially prepared or sterilized potting soil to protect local species from pests and disease.

Check the most current guidelines before you move to determine which plants are suitable for transport and which must remain behind. Typically, new residents can bring a variety of garden cuttings and houseplants that aren’t on the state’s prohibited list.

Prepare Plants Early

You should begin preparing plants for long distance moves well before moving day. Start by transplanting larger plants to plastic pots about three weeks before moving day. Plastic containers are a lightweight option that won’t break along the route.

If you need to conserve space, consider taking cuttings rather than the whole plant. Dip cuttings in rooting compound before planting them in a commercially prepared potting soil, and water the cuttings daily until the roots are well-established. Begin rooting your cuttings as early as possible to ensure they are established and healthy before the move.

Care Tips for Long Trips

Most plants can survive without for a few days without care, but you may need to provide water if you’re moving cross country. Put your plants in an accessible location in your car to make watering and care easier and provide water if the soil is dry.

Keep in mind that moving companies will not transport living plants, so it’s up to you to move them. If possible, keep plants in the front of the vehicle to provide sunlight and air flow during the trip. With a little preparation and some basic care, your cuttings and cherished houseplants can thrive in your new home state.

If you’re looking for the best movers to assist with your local or long distance relocation, call Apple Moving. We’re top-ranked among Austin TX moving companies and have locations across the US. Call us today for a free moving quote!

Moving State to State with Pets & Plants

Moving to another state may not seem much different from moving locally, but it can be, especially if you have pets and plants. You need to be aware of state and federal regulations for transporting pets and plants across state lines before making the decision to move them with you.

While you may be willing to take whatever measures are necessary to move with your pets, you could decide that transporting your plants is simply not worth the hassle during this busy time. Chipman’s state to state movers do not transport pets or plants, so you will need to make other travel arrangements if moving them.

Moving Pets Across State Lines

Moving can be very stressful for your pets. They don’t understand the way we do; they only know they are leaving their home. Talk to your veterinarian before the move and ask for recommendations on how best to help your pet through this transition. You can discuss it when taking your pet for a visit before the move.

If your pet is more than three months old, it will likely need a current rabies vaccination. Most states require them. A Certificate of Veterinary Inspection is also recommended. In fact, some states such as Washington and Oregon require the certificate of health be issued no more than 30 days before arrival. Each state has its own regulations, so check with the agriculture department for the state you are moving to in advance. You can find import information here. Your veterinarian should be able to provide the necessary information and documentation required. He or she may also be able to recommend a new veterinarian in the area you are moving to.

You will also need to check local pet licensing requirements. The city or county you are moving to may require a license for each pet and could also limit the number of pets you can own.

Once you arrive in the new home, keep a close eye on your pets. Only let them out on a leash, at least until they become familiar with their new home, and make sure they have identification with a current phone number in case they become lost.

The three main points to remember when moving with your pet:

  1. Visit the vet before you go and make sure your pet is up to date on vaccinations
  2. Double check on local pet licensing requirements for wherever you’re moving
  3. Keep an eye on your pet once you reach your destination and get them an updated collar

Moving Household Plants Across State Lines

Most states regulate the import of plants, including personal household plants, to prevent the spread of disease and pests. Many require transported plants be grown only indoors in sterilized potting soil, which can be purchased at a garden center. That means you probably won’t be able to dig up your plants from your yard and take them to your new home in another state, or even take potted plants kept outdoors in summer.

Some states require a certificate of inspection, and/or prohibit certain plants. For instance, California strongly discourages bringing citrus plants, fruit and nut trees and pine trees, even ones grown indoors, and requires any household plants be declared and easily accessible to border inspectors. Your local agricultural department should be able to provide information on regulations for the state you are moving to. If not, check with that state’s agricultural or natural resources department.

In addition to regulations, you must also consider how your plants will be transported. You don’t want to carry them in the trunk of your car, so unless you are able to safely transport them and can meet the destination state’s regulations, you may want to consider finding a new home for your plants before moving.

Three main things to remember when moving plants:

  1. Depending on where you are moving to, you probably can’t take your outdoor plants
  2. Some states require a certificate of inspection and may prohibit certain plants
  3. Plants need to have a safe way to be transported

As you can see, advanced planning is necessary for moving state to state with pets and plants. If you have additional questions or concerns, talk to the Chipman move coordinator provided with your residential moving service. He or she will be happy to assist you.

How do you move house plants from one state to another?

Moving with house plants

A house plant is a living, breathing organism and requires special care — especially when it comes time to move. If you’re moving out of state, you may need to do a little more prep work to not only ensure your plants arrive safely, but to be in compliance with the law, as each state has its own set of regulations and certification requirements for moving with plants. Learn the best practices for transporting plants and how you can take them with you to your new state.

Taking your house plants to a new state

Your plants are a special part of your home. Some might have sentimental value, or maybe you’ve put a lot of work into watching it grow. But whether you should (or legally can) take them with you to your new state depends on two factors: the law and the state’s growing conditions.

Know state guidelines

Some states have specific laws and regulations concerning importing plants. For example, some states only allow entry to plants that have been kept indoors, are potted, or are in a certain kind of soil. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), among other federal agencies, has a set of rules in place to help regulate the shipment of plants. This is a way agencies can help minimize the spread of harmful insects, diseases or other pests that some plants may carry. Before your move, check the laws and regulations in the state you’re moving to so you can decide if taking your plant with you is the right choice. If you can take your plant with you into your new state, be sure to check out the state’s specific guidelines so that you import your plant properly.

Know about growing conditions

Whether plants are allowed into a state isn’t the only concern when it comes to moving with them. It’s good to take into consideration that not all vegetation thrives in every environment. While plants kept indoors can be very hardy, they can still be affected by very dry or moist conditions. Consider the climate, available light and the frequency of rainfall at your new home, and use a resource like the plant hardiness zone map to determine if they’ll thrive in the area.

If it’s either not allowed or not favorable to take your plant with you, you may consider leaving it with family, a friend or a neighbor, or donate it to a local hospital or nursing home.

Packing plants for a move

Since it’s not ideal to ship living items in a moving truck because of the lack of airflow, water and sunlight, plants are on the Do Not Ship list for many companies, including U-Pack®. But there are several other options for getting them to a new home, including packing them into your personal vehicle. Here’s how to prepare and ship them.

What you’ll need to pack your plant

  • A sturdy moving box for each pot (small boxes are best so it doesn’t move around)
  • Plastic pots to replace clay pots during transit
  • Sterilized potting soil
  • Packing paper or newspaper
  • Bubble Wrap®
  • Plastic bags and ties
  • Flea collars
  • Paper towels (for cuttings)

Getting ready

  • Re-pot plan in a plastic container. Do this a few weeks before the move with fresh, sterile soil, so your plant has a chance to settle. Then you can pack empty clay pots the same as you would any fragile item (in Bubble Wrap, and placed securely in a moving box).
  • Check for bugs. Place a flea collar on the base of each plastic pot to draw out any pests. If your state requires a certified inspection, call a local agricultural department to schedule an appointment with an authorized examiner. Once they’ve cleared everything, you’ll receive the required forms — keep them with you in case you need to show them at state borders. If you aren’t transporting the plants, just make sure the certificate is inside the box.
  • Water it. Water plants two or three days before moving. The soil should be moist, but not too wet. Most can go 7-10 days without water, but it’s important to make sure the roots stay damp during shipment.

Proper packing will ensure your plants arrive healthy and intact. There are two ways to transport your plant: taking the whole thing or taking just a cutting. Either way, be sure to pack them last and unpack them first, so they stay healthy.

How to pack a potted plant

  1. Place a plastic bag over the pot and tie it at the base to keep the soil contained.
  2. Tape the bottom of the box well, then place the plant inside.
  3. Fill in extra space with packing paper or newspaper, so it’s secure but can also breathe.
  4. Poke holes in the box to allow for air flow. A few holes on each side will be adequate.
  5. Label the box “Live Plant” and “Fragile.”

Traveling with a cutting plant

If a plant is too big to move, like shrubbery or bushes, taking a cutting (essentially a stem, or roots that will allow the plant to regrow) just makes it easy to bring it to a new home. Here’s how:

  1. In the morning, take a sharp, clean cut on an area of the flower or bush you want to take. Select healthy growth that’s 3-6 inches long.
  2. To take the cutting with you, keep the end moist by wrapping it in wet paper towels. Secure the paper towels with rubber bands or ties and keep the cutting in a plastic stem holder (like what a bouquet comes in). Most local florists will sell them to you very cheap.
  3. If you need to pack the cutting, plant it in a plastic pot. Remove any lower leaves and place the cutting in moist potting soil. Loosely wrap it in plastic to keep it humid and encourage growth. Place the potted cutting in a box, following the directions above.

How to move plants

There are three main options for getting plants from one state to another:

Put them in the car with you

Taking plants with you is usually the fastest way to get them to the destination, and also lets you provide care like sunlight and water during the trip. Expose them to air flow by keeping them in the cabin of the vehicle (rather than being trapped in the truck). Keep them in the cabin of the vehicle, so they’re exposed to airflow (instead of being trapped in the trunk). If you stop at hotels along the way, bring them inside, so they are not affected by extreme temperatures.

Ship via air

If you’re flying, you can normally take house plants on the plane. Make sure to comply with TSA rules — so the plants can’t carry too much water or exceed carry-on size limits. Because of this, cuttings may be best suited for air transport. Check with your airline to determine specific requirements.

Send through the mail

Shipping is also an option. You may send plants through the USPS, UPS and FedEx, as long as you comply with each company’s guidelines. Contact your local shipping office for restrictions or guidelines, as they vary by shipper. When packing for shipment, we recommend you take extra measures to secure them because they can’t guarantee the package will stay upright. Protect the plants from extreme temperatures, depending on the time of year and the places it will travel through. For example, insulate the package if it will travel through extreme cold. Choose the fastest shipping method possible, and try to avoid shipping them over weekends or holidays.

More help with moving plants

If you have questions about shipping plants or want other packing tips and advice, leave us a comment below. While U-Pack isn’t able to transport plants, we specialize in moving household goods long distance and can provide an affordable moving option. Get a quote to check prices.

Moving Plants Across State Lines

There is a misconception that all plants can be moved from state to state. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Many states regulate what plants can and can’t leave. If your moving company is met with an inspector at state lines, you’ll want to make sure you don’t get your plants thrown away. In this blog, we will discuss what you need to know and how to properly move plants across state lines.

First, Let’s discuss regulations. State’s entire purpose of regulation is to ensure there isn’t a plant disease outbreak, transportation of local insects or creatures, and retention of supply.

  • You will want to make sure you re-soil your plants. Prior to your move, empty the soil and put new potting soil in it. Once it’s newly soiled, tie a bag around the bottom up to the trunk or stem of the plant. This will help prevent any insects entering the soil. Make sure not to cover the actual plant as this can cause your plant to die.
  • You want to reach out to the local DMV and ask about what is and isn’t allowed to be transported. If you choose Blue Beaver Movers as your moving company, we have the knowledge to answer your questions. We specialize in Out of State Moves and can help you through each aspect of a long-distance move.
  • If your plant is made for consumption, check with the FDA to ensure it is ok to bring your plant into a new state. There are Federal regulations about the transfer of food/medicine producing plants.
  • Know the conditions needed for your plant to survive. Your plant may survive in Oregon, but will it survive in Austin Texas or the destination you are going. For help, refer to online resources.
  • Some States only let you transport plants that you have grown and have been kept in an enclosed, sealed environment. Check and see if your state regulates your plant origin and environment.
  • If you are moving from a different country, you need to check the USDA regulations, State Department Regulations, and both of your International Federal Agencies.

Moving plants across state lines that aren’t allowed can cause large fines and loss of your plant. In addition, you could potentially have to unload the truck, have everything disinfected, and then reloaded. This can add substantial cost to your move, your time, and your effort. In addition, if your moving company rejects your plants from being loaded, it could cause you to lose your plants. We understand how important/required some people’s plants are. We also understand the sentimental value that can be tied to plants. Our goal is to make sure each client is prepared and understands what can and can’t cross state lines.

Now, we will discuss how to properly move plants and how to get them ready for your moving company or for you to transport.

  • First, you need to determine how long your trip is going to take you. A good rule of thumb is a moving truck can travel about 800 miles per day. Use this to determine how long your plants will be in the back of the moving truck.
  • Once you know how long your plants will be in the back of the moving truck, you now need to decide if your plants can last that long without sunlight. The last thing you want is to get to a destination like Austin Texas or wherever you might be moving to and find your plants dead or dying. To prevent that, check your plant’s lifespan without sunlight.
  • Now you should separate your plants between which ones can go that long without sunlight and which ones can’t. For the ones that can’t, you really have 2 options. You can prioritize your plants and bring the ones you want in your car. Or the second option would be to pull a small open trailer behind your moving truck or personal vehicle. This way you can leave the plants open and exposed to sunlight.
  • For your plants that don’t need constant sunlight, you should box them up. All plants should be boxed. It’ll be important to not just have 20 plants left at the end and have to try and squeeze them on your truck. Unboxed plants take up a ton of floor space on your moving truck. When boxing, put packing paper in all the gaps around the plant. Also put packing paper on the bottom of the box prior to putting the plant in. Each plant should sit on a cushion of packing paper. Then fill the rest of the box with packing paper and seal the box. You want to ensure that you fill it in a way where the top of the box won’t just cave in. Make sure to label the box as a plant and mark the box if the plant is super fragile. For light plants that you don’t think boxes should be stacked on, label the box “top stack only”. That’s common language for moving companies.
  • If you hauling your potted plants unboxed on a moving truck, you’ll want to make sure you do the following things.
    • Create a bed of cushion using furniture pads on the ground of the truck. This will help ease the vibration of the truck and keep ceramic pots from cracking.
    • Then you want to put pads between the wall and the potted plants.
    • Then run a strap around them all and put pads between the plants and the straps.
  • If you are moving them on an open trailer, you want to cushion the floor with padding. Then use padding to separate each plant from each other. You can also use cardboard to separate each plant. The biggest thing is to ensure they don’t move and bang up against each other or the sides.

Using these tips will ensure that your plants make it to your destination safely. If you have any questions on how to move plants, feel free to contact us.

We have covered what can and can’t cross state lines, who to check with before moving your plants, and general regulations. We’ve also discussed how to move plants across state lines and the importance of taking the time to protect your plants.

We believe that we provide a unique moving experience for out of state moves. We combine our experience, knowledge, and service to ensure you have a move you can trust and enjoy.

We hope this blog has been helpful and can help you when you are moving across the state lines. If you need any help or have questions, feel free to contact us:

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