A blog about all things related to flowers.

Dr. Flower: How to Perform a Successful Plant Transplant

Woman planting a tomato plant.

Many gardeners, both new and experienced, have fears about how to transplant flowers. Relocating can be tricky if you don’t take proper care to know your plant’s specific needs, so it’s important to do a little research before beginning the process. For all plants, there are a few key steps that will minimize any shock caused by initial moves. The steps below are not exact rules – all plants have specific needs – but they should help you better understand how to transplant flowers altogether.

Transplanting Time

It’s best to transplant during the dormancy phase. To know when your plant is dormant, be sure that buds have not yet formed, the plant has finished blooming and the green foliage has turned yellow or fallen off. For example, Iris’ greenery will turn yellow and wilt. If you have a bouquet of roses that has grown roots in a vase, transplant these in early spring for best results. 

If there’s one thing to remember about how to transplant flowers, it’s that you shouldn’t do it during the middle of summer. When a plant is spending its energy producing blooms or sprouting new branches, it won’t have the strength to adapt its roots to a new location and new soil composition. 

Dig the hole for your new plant during the cooler hours, and be sure to place it in the ground before the area is exposed to the heat of the day. You want healthy soil to welcome your plant, and sun exposure can kill off some necessary soil nutrients. This also goes for the plant’s roots. When exposed to the air or sun it can take only a few minutes for a root system to deteriorate, dry out or completely collapse.

For those annuals and perennials, a little fertilizer never does harm. These plants will love a little boost that mother nature may not provide, so send them a little growth spurt of manure or fish emulsions. If you happen to be transplanting shrubs or trees, hold off on the fertilizer. Trees and shrubs require root growth after a transplant before they can put their energy into their branches, so wait until the following season.


Pay close attention to any new additions to your garden when watering. Their roots are often stressed, trying to acclimatize to their new environment, so don’t give any added stress by over or underwatering. Check the soil, about an inch down, near the base of the plant for moisture. If it’s dry, go ahead and get the watering can out. 

If you’re worried about how to transplant flowers and you don’t want to harm your plants, simply purchase a bouquet from Teleflora instead! We have so many varieties of flowers to choose from that can fill your home with beauty, fragrance and freshness.  

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