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Old 06-17-2010, 03:36 PM
 
191 posts, read 386,938 times
Reputation: 185

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So, we're moving this week to Texas, and I have a few houseplants that I want to bring with me. The website was hard to navigate and was vague about what plants are allowed. I called the USDA to ask them, and they don't have any problems with the plants. But he called Texas to see if there were any state regulations. The message he relayed back to me was.. well, let's say I wasn't thrilled with the threats of "huge fines" and "zero tolerance." I'm supposed to call the guy tomorrow to see if I can bring my African Violet, bananas, and 35 year old Bonsai in to the state. And the real kicker was, when he told me that Texas has a zero policy for importing plants that results in heavy fines, I said, even if I bring a plant in without knowing the laws, and willingly relinquish the plants, I will still get a fine? And he replied that since I called and they had my name, they would be looking out for me. Nice welcome to Texas, geez.

So, we're leaving ASAP tomorrow morning, so I want to have an idea if I need to put my very expensive bonsai in the trash or not. The website says houseplants are allowed, does anyone know? The Texas guy wouldn't tell the USDA guy if they were allowed, I guess he just told him to tell me about the huge fines and to call him tomorrow so he can let me know. Now I'm sorry I tried to be conscientious and called. It's not like I'm trying to smuggled disease ridden plants in to the state or anything, quite the opposite, I am trying to follow the laws, which is why I called for clarification.

But, bottom line is, if you have been through a plant inspection station (we're coming in on 10, I'm guessing they stop everyone like they do in CA?), did they allow your houseplants in?
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Old 06-17-2010, 03:49 PM
 
Location: Seaford, Delaware
3,471 posts, read 17,264,227 times
Reputation: 2625
Bring your plants. There is no checkpoint and you will not be stopped. If you see a state trooper, tell the plants to duck.
Actually, there is no checkpoint or inspection at any border, except with Mexico. Arizona stops people more for immigration than plants.
I'm sorry you had such an ass to give you information. Texans are not typically rude. this guy was on a tear for some reason.
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Old 06-17-2010, 03:55 PM
 
1,933 posts, read 3,242,571 times
Reputation: 1941
Charlie...bring your plants...seriously the guy was on one when you called and ask. Its not like you are moving your bonsai in from Japan and no one will stop you unless your doing a 110 in a UHAUL and cutting people up like your smuggling Mary Jane...
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Old 06-17-2010, 03:59 PM
 
191 posts, read 386,938 times
Reputation: 185
Thanks for the info. We're on day 3 of the pack out, and my frustration level is really high right now. It was just one more thing I didn't need today.
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Old 06-17-2010, 04:28 PM
 
Location: San Antonio
11,941 posts, read 12,827,211 times
Reputation: 17186
Crazy. I'll take your plants when you get here.

Welcome to Texas.
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Old 06-17-2010, 05:40 PM
 
Location: TX
3,929 posts, read 4,699,805 times
Reputation: 4370
I'm no expert...but the only thing I have heard about is citrus. No citrus can be brought in or sent in. But sounds like that's not something that you'd have.
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Old 06-17-2010, 05:53 PM
 
Location: San Antonio, TX
8,400 posts, read 20,155,956 times
Reputation: 4435
Unless they're on these lists, they should be OK...

Texas Department of Agriculture

Exotic Fish, Shellfish and Invasive Aquatic Plants

This is a good site for more research, if you so desire...

Texas Invasives

Texas Invasives Database (http://www.texasinvasives.org/invasives_database/plants.php - broken link) (searchable and with good links)

I'm pretty sure your houseplants are OK.

Cheers! M2
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Old 06-17-2010, 06:38 PM
 
Location: San Antonio/Houston
37,948 posts, read 55,692,297 times
Reputation: 89592
I am reading and reading OP's post looking from where is he coming (thinking some exotic country in another continent) but he is coming from... CA. So what is the big deal? Where are the checkpoints or borders? Who is going to do the search of your belongings? First time ever hear about.
Well, except CA is not for California but Canada... then regulations might apply...
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Old 06-17-2010, 07:12 PM
 
191 posts, read 386,938 times
Reputation: 185
No, I'm coming from California. California is picky about plants being brought in, as they should be, because a major industry in California is agriculture. I live in the Central Valley were an obscene amount of the nation's produce is produced, and one pesky little bug on a plant can amount to millions in damages. They have check points in California on the major highways, both for illegal immigrants and for plants. They aren't always open, but sometimes they are and they stop every car and ask if they have plants or any fruit in the car. It's a pain in the rear. I assumed that Texas had checkpoints as well, because just looking on their websites they seemed all hopped up about it.

It said house plants are OK, but then it said that citrus was not. We have a houseplant lemon tree (it's kind of a "pet" the kids named it Wishy and everything), but I am assuming that even that is not allowed, even though it is a houseplant. We put Wishy in the yard, and the kids cried. So, I figured I'd call about the bananas. Once again, they are potted plants, but I wanted to be sure. And then it all blew up in my face, lol. Maybe he just hates Californians. [just making a joke]
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Old 06-17-2010, 08:18 PM
 
Location: Seaford, Delaware
3,471 posts, read 17,264,227 times
Reputation: 2625
Dig up Wishy and bring him. The kids and you are going through enough without leaving a part of the family behind. Put it in potting soil....not dirt. That'll make it safe until you get it here and can plant it. The same with the banana trees if your attched to them. You can get more banana plants here if it;s too much trouble to dig them up too.
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