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With the right care, you can transplant at almost any time of the year. The Home Depot's Joe Autry says you can transplant in the heat of summer, if you take care of the plants.
The day before you plan to dig the plant or plants out of the ground, give the area a good drink of water or wait until after it rains. You'll want the soil to be moist, but not soggy or the ground will turn hard around the roots. Many times, water is not handy though. Like if you go visiting someone who lives out on a farm. You can often find the prettiest flowers growing wild on the pasture lands. In these cases, still try to dig the plants out of the ground. As long as you get most of the root sections, the plant usually survives.
Get the Plants
If possible, prepare the planting holes before you bring your plant home. If you dig the holes before you bring the plants to their new home, it will lessen the amount of time the roots are exposed to the air and lesson the stress that the plants suffer. It is better to dig the holes bigger and deeper than you needed, because you are going to water the holes before planting. It isn't good for the soil to dig in it once it's wet.
Fill the holes with water. While the water is draining into the surrounding soil, this is a good time to go dig up the plants you want to transplant.
Prepare the holes
Dig out the plant or plants you want to transplant. When you dig, go out far enough from the base of the plant to get most of the roots. Insert your spade into the soil as far as it will go. Do this all the way around the plant. Insert the spade in the soil again, but this time, carefully pry the rootball out of the soil. Place the rootball in a box, cart, bag or tarp for easier transporting. It will also help keep the soil intact around the roots.
Transport them plants right away. Do not leave the plants out in full sun, or out in the wind. Otherwise, the roots will dry out and the plants will be under more stress.
Place the rootball in the hole. Now is a good time to adjust the depth of the hole. Make a mental note of how much soil you will need to add to the bottom so the top of the rootball is slightly above the surrounding ground level. As the soil beneath the rootball settles, the rootball will be level with the soil.
Fill in with soil around the rootball, tamping the soil lightly with your hands as you go. This will remove air pockets in the soil.
Water the area
When done, water the area thoroughly. It is important to water to keep the areas moist at all times, unless it is a cactus or other drought loving plant. You will need to water every day or sometimes twice a day depending on the weather.
When I transplanted some lilacs in my yard, I did it in the heat of summer, but I watered them every day and sometimes twice a day. Today, those lilacs are taller than I am and they filled out so well.