Shipping outdoor or house plants abroad by mail or courier

Shipping outdoor plants across the country or abroad may be a tricky task, but it is definitely not an impossible one. Discover how to pack and send potted plants via courier with expert tips from our specialists. Check how to ship plant, flower, and vegetable seeds. Booking a shipping service with us takes only a few instants and we will also help you in every step of the way.

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How to ship live plants internationally?

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What to know before arranging a delivery for potted plants?

Please take into consideration the following steps when you decide to ship live plants by courier:

  • Select the right shipping service for your plants by measuring your parcel and checking its dimensions. You can do it by using our size checker.
  • Consider the estimated time of delivery when sending plants by courier. Please make sure your plants can survive the transit time.
  • Check whether you are required to print your own label and attach it to the package. When shipping items through Eurosender, you will receive this information by email.

How to pack seeds for shipping?

  • Put the seeds in Ziploc bags or pouches.
  • Place the bags in a plastic food container.
  • Put it in the box, and fill the voids with padding materials, such as crumpled paper.
  • Seal the box with adhesive tape.

How to pack trees and big plants on a pallet

Guidelines for shipping trees and big plants by freight shipment.

  • Remove the tree from the soil but keep a small amount of it to maintain the tree humid and trim the leaves as much as possible.
  • Wrap the roots with wet paper towels and plastic foil or big plastic bags. Do not soak the paper too much so it will not leak water during transit. If your plant is placed on a vase, you can choose to ship it still potted.
  • Protect the pallet with liner paper and place the tree on top.
  • Secure the tree with several straps and bands to make sure it stands still. Alternatively, you can build a crate around the tree with plywood sheets or wooden boards.
  • Make sure the plant will not be able to move during transit and label your shipment.

Packing small or potted plants on a box

Follow this guide to prepare your plants for transportation before sending them via courier.

  • Water your plant to make sure it is adequately hydrated for the journey.
  • When sending potted plants via courier, you can either remove its roots from the soil and pack it according to the following step or ship the plant in its pot. In the latter, cover the pot with bubble wrap and put several pieces of cardboard scrap on the soil to secure it properly.
  • Protect the roots of the plant by covering it with several moist paper towels and wrapping it with bubble wrap and a collar of cardboard. Afterwards, place them in a plastic bag then and fix it with adhesive tape.
  • Protect the top of the plant with some newspapers or cling film. Put the plant in the box standing upright, if possible, and fill the box with packing peanuts to avoid it from moving.
  • Seal the box and secure its seams with adhesive tape. Consider labelling it with “Fragile”. However, note that such a warning cannot guarantee that a package will be treated as such and should not substitute proper packaging.

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Regulations about exporting outdoor plants abroad

Sending plants inside the EU

When shipping plants or seeds within Europe, check whether it needs a phytosanitary certificate, as it depends on the type of plant you are shipping. The same recommendation goes for plant seeds delivery by courier and by mail. European Union applies strict regulations to plants that are sent from outside the EU. However, there are no legal requirements for additional sanitary checks and certificates if the plant is grown and transported across the EU.

Sending plants to/from countries outside the EU

When it comes to delivering plants to countries outside the EU, it is necessary to check the official requirements and regulations from both respective countries related to international plant transportation.

The first step is to check whether the species of plant you want to transport is allowed in that country. Secondly, the sender needs to arrange all necessary documents for it to be cleared in customs. In the USA, for example, one is required to have a permit of transportation and transit when importing plants into American soil. In Australia, the species of the plant must be listed as allowed in the BICON website and may be required to go to quarantine upon arrival.

Before shipping flower bulbs and seeds internationally, it is important to make sure that they present no pest or disease risk. Bulbs should not contain soil.


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FAQ on shipping plants

Is it legal to send plants overseas?

If that species of plant is allowed in the country of destination and you have all necessary documents required for the shipment and customs clearance, shipping plants overseas is possible. Always check what are the rules of the local authorities before shipping such items. In general, small quantities of plants, trees, or plant products could be transported internationally for non-industrial, non-commercial, or scientific purposes.

Is it possible to send indoor or house plants as gifts by courier?

Most courier companies consider plants as restricted or prohibited items. However, many people still choose to ship plants abroad by courier or post since sending indoor or potted plants can be great gift ideas. Make sure your plants are well packed, whether you are shipping a succulent, a cactus or orchids. However, please be aware that when shipping outside the EU, every package (even gifts) must go through customs procedures and the respective taxes may be applied.

What are the most suitable plants for shipping with a courier service?
The most important thing to consider when transporting plants is the transit time, so make sure the plant can survive the duration of the journey inside the packaging. For that reason, less demanding plants such as cacti or succulents might be good options of plants to ship.
Is sending seeds in the mail allowed?

In general, it will not be difficult for you to ship such items by post domestically, even though countries like the USA apply local restrictions for interstate packages sent via postal services. When sending seeds abroad in the mail, you need to check the import regulations and restrictions of the destination country.

Does insurance apply when sending potted or outdoor plants via courier?
Unfortunately, insurance is not applicable for restricted items. Therefore, if you choose to ship seeds or plants abroad, be it succulents, cacti, seedlings or big plants such as fruit trees, you will be doing so at your own risk.

Take into consideration these guidelines when shipping plants. Nevertheless, please consider that following them does not guarantee that the courier company will transport your package without restriction. In case you decide to ship plants, Eurosender will not be held responsible for any damages caused by the transportation of your shipment.