Transplanting Herbs, and When
Answered by: Inge Poot
Question from: Clare Vander Molen
Posted on: August 03, 2004

Can herbs be transplanted? Which ones and when?

Most herbs are no different from other garden plants in that they can be transplanted and it is best done in spring, as early as you can get in the ground. Early fall is another fairly good time to transplant, the best time in fact for shrubs such as lilacs.

The later it gets in the year the bigger the root ball should be and in the heat of summer I would advise against any transplanting. You could fill in bare areas with potted plants, because these plants have had their roots confined in pots and won’t get much of a shock, plus hopefully no root disturbance.

There are a few plants that greatly resent transplanting, usually the ones with deep roots that just won’t regrow easily, or plants that have precise growing periods and won’t recover when disturbed outside of this growing period. Annuals and biennials often transplant poorly, because they expand a minimum of energy for a just adequate root system and then become bloom producing machines. Any disturbance at a late date may give them a fatal shock.

A few poor transplanters that come to mind are members of the carrot family, such as caraway and parsley. Others are belladonna, cilantro, dill, eucalyptus, goldenseal, indigo and false indigo, mullein, muskmallow and tarragon.

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