How do you ship tropical plants in the winter?
We get a lot of questions about how we ship our plants during the cold winter months. It is a process that we take seriously, and one that we have perfected through experience over time! We'll show you how we protect your plants from damaging cold, what to expect when your plant arrives, and unboxing your new plant and acclimating it to its new environment.
We are located in Spokane, WA (about a USDA Zone 6b or 7a), where we experience relatively mild winters but are no stranger to extreme cold snaps. In the rare event of sub-zero temperatures, we will communicate with you to determine the best shipping date. We also check the forecast for the destination before shipping and will reach out if there are any extreme-cold daytime temperatures.
We are here every step of the way to ensure your process is smooth and your plant arrives happy!
Protecting delicate plants from damage during shipping is an intricate process, and during cold weather, we add even more layers of protection:
- Most of our plants are shipped in small (3") pots, which we seal to prevent soil from spilling and keep the plant sturdy in place. The soil is shipped only slightly damp to prevent the roots from rotting.
- The potted plant is wrapped in thick unbleached, water-resistant kraft paper to protect the plant from moving during shipping, as well as to effectively insulate the plant.
- A complimentary heat pack is also insulated and packed in the root-zone of the plant, ensuring the soil temperature stays consistent while in-transit. The roots must stay warm for the plant to survive, and the residual heat stays well-contained in the insulated box.
- Using sustainable, biodegradable crinkle paper, we surround the plant with eco-friendly packing fill, further insulating, avoiding shifting, and giving the plant a pillowy-soft cushion from any blows.
- Our plants include a care guide for the specific plant, instructions for the first few weeks with your new plant, and how to contact us any time with any questions.
- We ship using USPS Priority Mail (free shipping included on orders over $50). Generally, shipping times are 1-3 days, although it can take up to 5 days, depending on where we are shipping to. We avoid shipping on weekends, so orders placed on from Thursday to Sunday are generally shipped the following Monday to avoid any unnecessary delays to the shipment.
What can I expect when my plant arrives?
When your package gets delivered, bring it inside right away to minimize the potential for cold-damage. Your box will be clearly labeled with an 'UP' side; carefully cut the tape on that side (be sure not to insert sharps into the package when you do this, as you don't want to damage the plant inside).
Once inside the package, you'll find a care guide for your specific plant, and our recommendations to help encourage the plant to recover and acclimate to its new environment. These are simple steps like watering immediately, placing in a bright location, and waiting two weeks before repotting the plant or removing it from the soil we ship it in. All of our plants are well-rooted, which we know because we grow many of them in transparent containers so we can monitor the root development. We custom-blend different soilless media for different plants, and proudly use high-performance, sustainable media and organic slow-release nutrients, so we recommend simply watering and letting the plant fully recover, at which point you can repot the plant in a container and medium of your choice!
Most importantly, we are available and happy to answer questions at any point.
Will my plant be damaged or stressed by the cold?
While we have developed a strategic winter plant packing and shipping procedure, and have had excellent success shipping plants in the winter (and customer reviews to prove it!), we can't guarantee that no plant will ever show any signs of stress after shipping, let alone in winter. Usually this comes in the form of yellowing and dropping of the oldest leaves on the plant, which is a way for the plant to reabsorb some nutrients and focus on its new growth. We will help you nurse the plant back to full health, but if the plant arrives in a condition that is not recoverable, we guarantee to make it right by replacing the plant with the same type of plant or another plant of your choosing, depending on our available inventory at the time.