Q. How can I transplant my pachysandras in July?
Thank you for your question.
Pachysandra is tough as well as attractive and while it is not impossible to replant in July, it is not ideal. It is likely to be quite hot, with long days of sun exposure, at a time of active growth for these plants. All those factors will put your newly planted area under extra pressure to take up moisture at a time that the plant roots have not yet established themselves and are thus less able to supply what the plant needs. You will probably be able to get your transplants established, but are likely to experience more plant failures than usual.
There are things that you can do to mitigate the stress on the plants. If you have the flexibility to move the plants on a day of lower temperatures and at a point in the day that the sun is not at its hottest, that will help.
Pachysandra are not particularly reliant on rich organic matter, but some nutrition and good structure to the soil is important. Prepare the planting area with a generous addition of organic matter. Use a sharp spade to dig up manageable clumps complete with roots, and move plants as quickly as possible into their garden position
Pachysandra terminalis (the most commonly planted type) spreads by rhizomes, which are thick horizontal stems under the ground. The rhizomes have nodes from which roots and shoots grow. Simply check the rhizomes for nodes with roots and divide them at that point. Plant the divided rhizomes up to a foot apart and water them daily. Mulch between the transplanted clumps and plan on keeping them well watered during the first summer while they become established. The plants will take hold and fill in the area in a year or two.
If you decide to wait, spring is the ideal time for transplanting and fall is next best.
Good luck with your transplants. Let us know if we can be of further help.
Courtesy of the NYBG Plant Information Service