How to Transplant a Bird of Paradise Plant


A bird of paradise plant is exotic. The plant gets its name because when it blooms, the flower looks like the plumage of a bird. The plant grows best in warm areas, and it needs at least four hours of direct sunlight a day. Transplanting the bird of paradise can be a challenge, depending on the size of the plant. The plants grow to be heavy 3- to 5-foot clumps, according to University of Florida Extension, and the plants may need to be transplanted on occasion to give it more room to grow.

Difficulty: Moderate


Things You’ll Need:

  • Shovel
  • Garden fork
  • Wheelbarrow
  • Mulch
  • Fertilizer
  1. Choose a spot where the plant will have direct morning sunlight, and it have protection from the heat of the afternoon sunlight. Transplant the bird of paradise once the threat of frost passes.

  2. Water the bird of paradise one day before you transplant it. This will make the process easier, and the plant will adapt better to its new location.

  3. Dig around the bird of paradise to expose the roots. Avoid cutting the roots when you dig around the plant. Insert a shovel or garden fork at least 6 to 8 inches away from the plant, and then loosen the dirt until the plant lifts from the ground with the roots intact.

  4. Remove dead leaves from the plant. You may need to place the bird of paradise in a wheelbarrow, slide it on a tarp, or have someone help you carry it because the plants grow to be very heavy.

  5. Dig a new hole in the selected location. Dig the hole as deep as the plant’s roots, and make it twice as wide. Keep at least 6 feet between the plants if you are transplanting more than one at a time.

  6. Sit the bird of paradise into the new hole. Fill the hole with back soil, and tamp the soil down around the roots of the plant.

  7. Make a trench around the bird of paradise with a shovel to allow the water to drain to the roots.

  8. Water the bird of paradise to moisten the soil. Keep the soil moist, but avoid over watering the plant.

  9. Add 3 inches of mulch to the base of the plant. Add fertilizer every two weeks until the plant establishes itself at the new location.

Tips & Warnings

  • Divide large clumps at the same time to create more bird of paradise plants. According to University of Florida Extension, plants with four or more shoots can be divided to single stems and planted at the same depth as the original clump. All four new plants will flower in one to two years.

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