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How to Transplant Honeysuckle

By Kay Dean ; Updated September 21, 2017

The varieties of honeysuckle include the Lonicera sempervirens, or trumpet honeysuckle, and the Tecomaria capensis, or cape honeysuckle. These vines grow from 6 to 20 feet long, producing fragrant white or orange blossoms. Honeysuckle vines are easy to transplant and, according to the University of Missouri Extension, should be transplanted in early spring, before the plant begins to grow.

Select a new location for the honeysuckle that has rich, moist, well-draining soil. Select a spot that receives full or partial sun and has something for the vine to grow on, such as a fence, porch rail, trellis or arbor.

Dig up the new plant site before digging up the honeysuckle. Dig a hole that is at least 2 feet deep by 2 feet wide. Add generous amounts of compost or well-rotted manure to enrich the soil. Add generous amounts of peat moss to heavy clay soils.

Prune large honeysuckle vines before transplanting them. Completely remove one-third of the oldest branches and trim one-third off the length of the rest of the branches.

Dig up the honeysuckle; try to get as much of the root system as possible. Place a heavy plant in a wheelbarrow or on a tarp to move it to the new location.

Enlarge the hole if it is smaller than the root system or if the root system will not fit in without being crushed. Place the plant in a container filled with water while you enlarge the hole to prevent the roots from drying.

Place the honeysuckle in the hole. Turn the plant so that the longer vines are closest to the plant support. Shovel the soil around the roots until they are half covered. Water to settle the soil. Finish filling the hole and tamp down gently to remove air pockets.

Spread a 2-inch layer of mulch under the honeysuckle to help retain soil moisture. Do not mound the mulch around the main stems of the vine.

Water the honeysuckle again to settle the soil around the roots. Continue to water daily until the plant puts out new growth. Then reduce the frequency of watering to once a week and give the vine 1 inch of water each time.


Things You Will Need

  • Shovel
  • Compost or well-rotted manure
  • Peat moss
  • Pruning shears or lopping shears (optional)
  • Wheelbarrow or tarp
  • Large bucket or container (optional)
  • Mulch

About the Author


After attending Hardin Simmons University, Kay Dean finished her formal education with the Institute of Children's Literature. Since 1995, Dean has written for such publications as "PB&J," Disney’s "Family Fun," "ParentLife," "Living With Teenagers" and Thomas Nelson’s NY Times bestselling "Resolve." An avid gardener for 25 years, her experience includes organic food gardening, ornamental plants, shrubs and trees, with a special love for roses.