Transplanting Mature Plants

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Today is a beautiful day! 72 and sunny is my ideal year round weather and that is what God blessed me with today. So I took advantage of the sunshine and my daughter’s nap and went outside to fix a problem that has plagued me for four years.

You know how you have those things either in your house or in your garden that just bug you? You know it doesn’t look right. It probably wouldn’t be too hard to fix. But you just never make the effort. For four years. Here is my nemesis.


So. Many. Problems. Now, I am not an expert gardener. I don’t know much about the biology of plants. But I know aesthetics. And this looks B.A.D.

Disclaimer: This is not a “how to” post. This is a journey. And if you decide to transplant mature plants after reading this I do not claim any responsibility for your plant’s demise. Seriously. But if you have success or have advice, I am all ears!

Here’s my backstory:

Four lovely years ago when we bought this house there was zero landscaping. I love to garden, but at that point in my life we had a tiny weeny budget for it. So I did what any new homeowner would do and I went out and bought the cheapest shrub that would grow as fast as possible. And that gave me that green beauty in the front. (I told you I’m no expert. I don’t even know what it’s called.)

The original plan was to put it in front of a tall flowering tree so that the tree would grow 2 feet above the 4 foot tall shrub and be beautiful and magnificent and cover up that hideous electric box. {Side note: Who puts the electric meter on the front of the house? That is just cruel.} Back to the story, I didn’t want to put the tall green thing in the back because I was afraid I’d be yelled at my the meter man because I would be blocking the meter. True story.

So here are the problems. 1. The stunning flowering TREE turned out to be a bush. A bush that doesn’t grow above three feet tall. A crab apple bush. See, at least I know that name. 2. The green shrub grew to be about 6 feet tall. Which says something because I do not typically have a green thumb. So now I have this weird shrub covering up my flowering bush and the electric meter is in no way hidden at all. Plus, when you look at the big picture my matching green shrub on the other side of the flower bed is in the back so it is all out of whack. Thus, why I need “grace in my space.” I’ve showed it grace for 4 years. Time to move on.

Solution: Transplant those puppies. I waffled back and forth on the idea because I didn’t want to kill both plants since they were so established. So I did what most would do. I asked my mom. And her advice? “What’s the worst that could happen? They both die and you are out $50.” So there you have it. The logic of mom never ceases to fail. So out came the shovel and work gloves.

First step, take out the green shrub. I really imagined this would take some work. It is about 6 feet tall and has been in the ground for four years. But, it pretty much came out with a slice of the shovel in a circle around the roots. Score! Next step, take out the crab apple. As you can see, it wasn’t rocket science.

There were, however, a couple of moments of questioning. For example, these huge roots I sliced off looked important. Think the crab apple will miss them? We shall see. Also, look at that sandy soil. It is a wonder that I can grow anything in this stuff.

And then there was this little guy. And by little I mean huge and terrifying when you look down at your hand and see him staring back at you. I think at this point I did a little jig, screamed and ran around the yard shaking my glove. He was determined not to let go.


After I recovered, I swapped the plants’ spots, filled in the dirt, and watered the plants like mad. A new layer of mulch and voila. So much better. Electric meter is almost fully hidden and the flowers are no longer out of sight.

Not the biggest transformation ever, but I’m glad to have it done so I can stop questioning why I ever landscaped that way in the first place. I’ll let you know later this summer if either plant was affected negatively! Pray they don’t both die. And now I wait for all those beautiful perennials to rise and show themselves!


{2 Corinthians 13:14 May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.}



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