Learn how to avoid and fix plant transplant shock

Plants should not be moved from place to place and when we as humans do this to them, plant transplant shock is almost unavoidable. Here are some things that we can do to cure it before it has even happened.

How to avoid plant transplant shock

  • Make sure the root ball stays moist when transplanting – If the root ball dries out at all, the roots will be damaged and most likely will not take to the transplant.
  • Bring as much of the roots as possible – Preventing shock means when digging up the plant, make sure as much of the roots as possible are brought up with the plant. The more roots that come with the plant, the less likely plant transplant shock will set in.
  • Disturb the roots as little as possible – Do not shake off the dirt or bump the root ball of the plant or rough up the roots. You should do as little as possible to the root ball when moving the plant from one location to the next.
  • Water the plant thoroughly when transplanting – An important transplant shock preventative is to make sure that your plant receives plenty of water after it is moved. This is a good way to avoid transplant shock and will help the plant settle in to its new location.

How to cure plant transplant shock

  • While there is no sure way to cure plant transplant shock, there are things you can do to minimize shock.
  • Keep roots moist – Keep the soil well watered but make sure the plant has good drainage and is not in standing water because you do not want your plant to ‘drown’.
  • Trim back the plant – Trimming the plant allows it to focus on regrowing its roots.
  • Use a sugar and water solution – Studies have shown that when given to a plant after transplanting this can help recovery time for transplant shock. It can also be used as a transplant shock preventative if applied at the time of transplanting. It only helps with some plants but as this will not harm the plant it is worth a try.
  • Be patient – Sometimes a plant needs a few days to recover from transplant shock. Give the plant some time and care for it as you normally would and it may come back on its own.