Julie Bernhardt wrote:The part where they get slimey is what worries me.
I just want to take small fans. I know that dividing rejuvenates the plants but I don’t want the people that bought the house to see it as me taking something they bought so I was hoping to take so little that they couldn’t tell I took any.
I was hoping that I could dig them a week before the move as I would have more time.
Still not sure whether to keep them bare root or plant in buckets of soil, sand or peatmoss.
I used to get leftover daylilies and irises from clients after thinning them out. I trimmed the leaves down to about half an inch and threw them in an extra empty plastic pot. I often forgot about them for a week or so and they were fine. If they get dry and shriveled, just soak them in water for a day before planting. I think they will be happier directly planted in their new home.
Bare root transport saves you the most space and gives the roots the most air. As long as they have air and aren't dripping wet, they shouldn't get slimy. A brown paper bag or a basket will let air in. Too many in the basket and the ones in the center might get slimy, just shuffle them around every couple days. Also I would be a little worried about unwittingly bringing pests in the soil.
If they look sad and you get worried about them, moist paper towels or moist cloth around them is plenty. Or stick them in water when you are stopped for the night. I've definitely left them in water for a few days before and they were fine. And if left in the direct sun in the car, they could get cooked obviously.
Unless it's in your contract not to take plants, take as many as you want! You grew them! As long as you don't leave an obvious hole or odd shape, the new residents won't notice. Take evenly from around the outside leaving a nice circle, or take a clump from the middle leaving a nice looking ring. The plants will fill in in one or two seasons anyway. I doubt you will hear anything about it.