How to Move With Houseplants in The Winter

Of course, you worry about how to move with houseplants during cold weather in a residential move, whether local or long-distance.


To move with houseplants in the winter, pack them last with little water. Put them inside a box or, if the plants are big, with a lightweight cotton sheet around them.


When you’re going to move with houseplants, put them on the truck last, and remove them first. 

House doors are open during a move, and it can be cold. Keep the houseplants in a warm room until the end, just before loading them onto a truck. Let the mover know that you want the plants kept together to move them off the truck all at once easily. 

A-Zip Moving & Cartage Inc has decades of experience moving delicate and specialty items.



Mark any boxes containing plants so the movers can keep track of them.

It is best if nothing goes above them other than more plant boxes. As long as the boxes stack without caving the lower boxes, this can save space in the moving truck.


Almost all of our houseplants are descendants of tropical climate plants from around the world, meaning they’ve never played outdoors in the snow. 

Our love of plants dates back to ancient times, although indoor plant breeding didn’t become popular until the 17th and 18th centuries. During the European colonization of tropical islands, our beloved houseplants were harvested by the shipload from their native ecosystems.


How cold-resilient are houseplants?

Some plants can handle the cold better than others. Many houseplants are happy in cold rooms, and their roots will do fine in cool soil. 

Extended exposure to cold temperatures can stress some delicate plants; however, protecting them during their polar bear run to the truck on their way to their new home is relatively easy. An established vigorous plant is quite resilient, and as long as you take a few precautions, your plants will be fine and remain looking great.


Which houseplants do best with the cold?

If you need to make a houseplant Sophie’s choice, to provide a lot of protection by way of a box or a thick paper bag to some plants but little protection to others, the following houseplants are hardier than others:

  • Snake plant
  • ZZ Plant
  • Cast Iron Plant
  • Jade Plant
  • Sago Palm
  • Ponytail Palm
  • Dracaena
  • Philodendron
  • Succulents (the desert gets cold at night)
  • Chinese Evergreen
  • Fiddle Leaf (as shown in our main illustration above)
  • Aloe


Use yard waste bags, sheets, and boxes for the plants. Even large plastic garbage bags work.

Organic materials like fabric, cardboard and paper have more insulative qualities than plastic, but really, the goal is to cut the wind and cold, and a plastic bag will achieve that, although less efficiently than an organic container. 

(If the weather is going to be extremely cold, it may be better to put your plant in a paper yard waste bag or wrap it in a sheet.)


Do not put holes in the boxtops or plastic bags.

Airtightness will provide the most heat retention within the container. A plant is better in an airtight environment during a move. A plant will not suffocate inside a plastic bag. Plants recycle the air around them, constantly repeating the process of absorbing carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen. 


Houseplants will live happily in a plastic bag or a box for a few days.

However, their requirement for light will begin to take a toll on their health after 2 or 3 days.


The soil should be on the dry side if your houseplants will be in the back of our unheated trucks for a few hours.

Time your plants’ watering so they are drying out on the day of your move. Too much water will increase the ice possibilities around the plants’ roots. Cold is tolerable for the roots of many houseplants, but ice will freeze the roots, killing them.


How can you move large plants without freezing their leaves?

If your plants are broad spreading, gather their stems and leaves and gently work a large plastic garbage bag over them vertically or horizontally, depending on the plant’s growth pattern. 


Use garden sticks in the pots in conjunction with bedsheets to act like tent props to protect delicate stems from breaking. 


We can tent an area within the truck with the hardier plants protecting your more delicate houseplants in the middle.


Most of A-Zip Moving & Cartage’s moves are local moving services. However, we ensure your plants are moved reliably, no matter the distance. A long-distance move (over 100 miles) is also safe for your plants. 


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