Home Garden

How to Transplant Datura

Datura refers to the genus comprised of 5 species of pungent, flowering evergreen shrubs and trees, including Jimson weed (Datura stramonium), horn-of-plenty (Datura metel) and downy thornapple (Datura inoxia var. quinquecuspida). Collectively, daturas are commonly referred to as "angels trumpets" due to the trumpet-like shape of their showy white flowers. Daturas grow as annuals in all U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones, and some species are hardy as perennials in certain USDA zones. Datura stramonium is hardy in zones 3 through 9, Datura metel in zones 7 through 10 and Datura inoxia var. quinquecuspida in zones 5 through 10. Daturas may be transplanted any time of year, but it is ideal to do so in fall or winter when daturas are dormant so that they can become established before new growth begins..

Things You'll Need

  • Compost or pine bark hummus
  • Garden spade
  • Pruning shears
  • Shovel
  • Organic mulch
Show More


    • 1

      Water your datura thoroughly 24 to 48 hours before transplanting. Make sure the soil is saturated, but do not allow standing water as it may lead to root disease. For larger plants, use pruning shears to trim the stems back to 6 to 12 inches in length prior to transplanting.

    • 2

      Choose a transplant site that sits in either full sun or partial shade. Prepare it for planting by amending the soil to improve drainage and aeration. For clay soil, mix in 2 inches of compost or pine bark hummus. For sandy soil, amend with 2 to 3 inches of pine bark hummus. Use a garden spade or your hands to mix it into the soil at a depth of approximately 10 inches.

    • 3

      Loosen the soil around the datura. Insert a shovel into the soil all the way around the plant, being sure to stay 4 to 6 inches away from the stems in order to avoid root damage.

    • 4

      Remove the datura from the earth by inserting the shovel once more and sliding it under the root ball. Use the shovel to lift the plant out of the soil, leaving any attached soil intact on the root ball. Avoid pulling the datura up by the stems or trunk because this can cause plant injury.

    • 5

      Dig a planting hole in your transplant site that is the same depth as the original hole, but twice as wide as the root ball. As you dig up the soil, set it aside for later use.

    • 6

      Prune off any broken or decaying roots with pruning shears. Lift the datura, holding it by the root ball, and place it gently into the new hole. Fill in the space around the roots with the soil you set aside. Water the transplanted datura with approximately 2 gallons of water. This will settle the soil around the roots and stabilize the plant.

    • 7

      Water your transplanted datura 2 to 4 mornings per week for the first month, using 2 to 4 gallons of water each time. Your goal is to keep the soil moist, but not overly wet. Do not allow standing water. Continue watering once per week during the first year after transplant, and spread a layer of organic mulch that is 1 to 2 inches thick around the base of the plant to hold in moisture and provide additional nutrients.