Moving to Hawaii with Plants

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Moving to Hawaii with Plants

There are options to moving with your houseplants. Consider giving them to friends, to local hospitals or libraries, or sell them at a garage sale.


If you move your plants yourself, you’ll have more control over environmental conditions than if they are moved by any other method. Never carry plants in the car trunk, which can get too hot in summer and too cold in winter.

Professional Moving

  • Most professional moving companies will accept plants, under Federal Highway Administration rules that provide that: the plants are transported not more than 150 miles and/or delivery is completed within 24 hours from the time of loading; no storage is required; no en route servicing or watering is required of the mover.
  • If you are planning to move houseplants interstate, you should be aware of federal and state plant regulations. Plant quarantines may be in effect in certain areas to restrict the movement of plants that may harbor destructive pests. Before these plants can be moved, they must be cleaned by the appropriate federal or state plant protection official.
  • Several states require that indoor plants be inspected and certified “pest free” before they can be moved across their borders. Other states do not require certification as long as the houseplants are the property of the individual and are not for resale. Still others refuse all entry of specific varieties. Many states permit “thru-transit” of uncertified, healthy houseplants.
  • In some states, vehicles are stopped at random on the highway, and any plants carried are inspected for pests. Several states stop vehicles at their borders and inspect all houseplants. Much time can be saved if the plants are accompanied by state-of-origin certifications.
  • You must personally arrange for inspection of your houseplants by an authorized state department of agriculture inspector. Call the department’s county office and schedule an inspection to take place no less than two weeks prior to moving. In some cases, you may have to take your plants to the nearest office for inspection and possible treatment in fumigation chambers.

Moving Tips

Some house plants are susceptible to shock when moving. The distance moved or time to transit doesn’t make the shock greater – it simply will take the plant longer to recover.

This is the most central factor in moving houseplants. Temperature below 35 degrees F or above 95-100 F for much over an hour can be fatal to many. Plants in cartons that are properly wrapped will withstand quite a variation in temperature, but it is inadvisable to transport plants in unheated vehicles when the temperature is approaching the freezing point.

Most houseplants can survive up to a week or 10 days without watering and suffer little harm. Plants should be moist when placed in cartons.

When other conditions are favorable, houseplants can tolerate darkness for up to a week. But plants left in darkness too long “etiolate” or start to put out abnormal growth more susceptible to disease. When first exposing plants to light after a lengthy period of darkness, avoid possible wilting and sun scald, by limiting sun exposure for the first few days.

For convenience and space saving, you may with to take cuttings of your favorite houseplants, it they can be propagated that way. Most cuttings will survive for several days if kept in a plastic bag containing damp vermiculite, peat moss, or perlite, or even wrapped in a wet paper towel. However, potted plants have a much greater chance of surviving a long trip than do cuttings.

© American Moving and Storage Association. Used with permission.
* Note: The above is especially important on long distance moves and moves over water, such as is the case when moving to Hawaii or shipping to Hawaii.
* Global Shipping specializes in relocations including, but not limited to, shipping to Hawaii, moving to Hawaii, shipping from Hawaii, and moving from Hawaii.

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