problems with sending seeds to the USA

Rachel Saunders
Sat, 17 Sep 2005 09:01:56 PDT
Dear All,
I need some information please if someone can help.
For the last 3 or 4 years, we have been sending seed into the USA using a
fairly simple system.  We wait until we have 10 US orders, then get 1
phytosanitary certificate covering all species in the orders, and send the
orders in 1 large box with the 1 phyto to my brother in Chicago. When the
box arrives, he posts the orders for me.
This has worked extremely well until recently.  In the last 4 months, 2
boxes have disappeared.  They have never re-appeared. So this time I decided
to contact the USDA and ask if they had it. They told me that they did not.
Then, by some very strange coincidence, 2 days later my brother was notified
that they did in fact have the box, and they were sending it back to me.
The reason for this is:

"You cannot include items that require treatment as a form of entry with
items that do not require treatment. Also phyto must include the variety of
sp. "Aloe sp." is not sufficient".

On the phyto we have always put Lachenalia species, Moraea species, etc
instead of listing every single species (which is tedious!) and until now
this has been acceptable.   I can obviously get round this problem - I will
have to list every species which is tedious but possible.
And the 2nd problem is the treatment of seeds. Is there a list that the USDA
issues telling one which seeds need treatment and which do not?

I am now in a state as the whole system seems to have fallen apart and I am
not sure what to do.  Has anyone heard that the regulations have changed?
What is the position about import permits? Do you all have to have import
permits for seeds, or can you import small quantities without permits?  I
remember reading a while ago that the requirement for phytosanitary
certificates for hobbyists may be disappearing. I assume that this has not

I am now sitting here with 15 orders waiting to be sent to the USA, and I
don't know how to send them or what to do with them! Does this mean the end
of seed for you all??!!
Rachel Saunders
Silverhill Seeds
Tel +27 21 762 4245
Fax +27 21 797 6609
PO Box 53108, Kenilworth, 7745 South Africa

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