Receiving Your Plant (It’s on Your Doorstep)
You did it! You bought it, we shipped it, and now it’s on your doorstep. What to do now?
Your greatest threat to your plant is temperature extremes. When your plant is delivered, get the box inside as quickly as possible – leaving it boxed, in direct sunlight or temperatures below 45 degrees, can harm or kill your plant. Even if you can’t unbox it immediately, get it inside or out of the direct sun – you can unbox it later.
To spring your plant from its boxed confinement, all you need is a pair of scissors and something to protect the floor from a possible soil or water spill. It can be done by one person, but an extra set of hands is helpful.
Watch video on unboxing your plant:
Get the plant/box in a space big enough to lay it on its side. Put something down to protect the floor – a plastic tarp is preferred. Place the box on the tarp. Lay it on its side. Use sharp edge of scissors (or a box cutter or sharp knife) to cut the tape that connects the top of the box with the bottom. Lift box to a 45 degree angle (with your helper or lean it against a table or chair). With the tape cut, lift the box straight up and remove the top part of the box by sliding it out and putting it aside. Put the lower part of the box still containing the plant back at a 45 degree angle and cut the tape on the bottom of the box. With the tape cut, open the bottom, lift the box up and let the plant slide through it.
At this point, you should have a plant in its growpot and other items encased in a fishnet sleeve sitting in the middle of your tarp. It has a tie knot below the growpot, so it might be a little “wobbly” and need your help staying upright.
Using your scissors, completely cut the fishnet mesh near the top edge of the growpot and pull the netting off the top of the plant, sliding it gently over the foliage. Pause – this is usually a good moment when you get to see the spread of your new plant. Voila! Back to the plant – There’s a PVC pipe in the middle of the plant that was used to stabilize it during shipping – lift it out and discard it, use it, or recycle it. Remove and set aside any other packaging materials – bag of moss, foam collar, etc. – and untie/undo the plastic bag covering the growpot and vinyl liner. Remove the plant and liner (and PVC ring) from the plastic bag and discard or recycle the bag.
Warning: The growpot and liner maybe wet, and soil may have come out of the rootzone during shipping, creating a potential mess. Be sure to protect your floor from water damage and/or getting dirty from soil.
Note: This is not shown in the video, but with the vinyl liner out and on a protected surface, it should be carefully inspected for cracks or tears that may have occurred during shipping. If the liner appears damaged, stop here and contact PLANTZ for a replacement liner.
At this point, place the PVC ring in the center of the liner and lift your plant on to the ring. With the plant on the ring and in the liner, push the white capillary strips protruding from the holes in the growpot down in to the bottom of the liner so that the strips are making contact with the bottom of the liner.
After you’ve checked your plant and determined the soil is dry, you should water it for the first time.
Watch video on initial watering:
Using a watering jug, dispense water in a 360 degree pattern around the base of the plant. Stop watering when water drains from the holes in the bottom of the growpot. Then, fill the vinyl liner up with water to the bottom of the growpot, creating a reservoir from which the plant can irrigate itself.
Note – The video shows the initial watering with the plant sitting outside a decorative planter. This is done so that it’s easy to see what we’re doing. If you plan on placing your plant in a decorative planter, you should do that before the initial watering. If it’s done, as shown in the video, outside a planter, you won’t be able to move the plant again until the water has been absorbed by the plant.
Professional Styling Set Up
Often overlooked, this step goes a long way in upping the happiness quotient with your plant. These steps will allow you to finish off your plant in style and make it look like it’s worthy of presentation in a five-star hotel lobby.
Watch a video on professional styling:
These are the staging components (in order, from bottom to top):
- Decorative planter – that we’ll just call the “planter”.
- Plant riser – this is material placed under the liner to fill the void in the bottom of the planter to raise the entire plant to the desired level within the planter.
- Vinyl liner – to catch excess irrigation water.
- PVC riser – to raise the plant above the liner to create an irrigation reservoir under the plant (aka, sub-irrigation).
- Growpot (with plant in it, of course) and its dangling capillary strips.
- Foam collar – to fill void between the outside of the growpot, and the inside of the planter to give support when moss topdressing is laid in place.
- Moss – it’s the finishing touch and as close as we get to “the icing on the cake” in the plant biz.
Start with your planter, and calculate how much you’ll need to raise the growpot so that the soil is near the top of the planter; add enough plant riser (Styrofoam, wood, rocks, etc) to raise it to that level. Install the liner, PVC ring, and place the plant & growpot on the ring. If you calculated correctly, the soil in the growpot should be slightly below (about 1”) the top rim of the planter. Use the foam collar material to fill the void between edge of the growpot and the inside wall of the planter – this should stabilize the plant in the planter and give support to the moss that comes next.
Note – The foam collars can be cut in to sections for a good fit. The foam can be cut lengthwise or in to pieces. You will need some space so that there’s some line-of-sight down in to the planter to see if there’s water in the reservoir and to pour water in to the reservoir.
Then add moss as a topdressing on the soil and staging materials. It’ll hide all the ugliness of the soil and growpot and give it a finished look that you’ll be very proud of!