hydrangea blossoming

hydrangea blossoming
Hydrangea on the Edge of Blooming

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A Little More on Dirt

For accuracy's sake, I need to tidy up the last post about dirt being forbidden entry on either side of the border.  You actually can bring in plants that are growing in dirt if they are accompanied by a phytocertificate, which guarantees that they are pest free.  You can get the certificate at nurseries, e.g., in B.C., if you want to bring a plant into the U.S.  But you have to pay for the certificate in which, effectively, the nursery promises that it knows the plant and the plant is OK.  We once tried to get phytocertificates for a dozen or so large rhododendrons growing in a friend's property in Bothell, WA.  Since the plants were unknown to a nursery that issued phytocertificates, it proved too onerous a task for us, not to mention expensive.

In addition, dirt without a plant can be brought in if you have the right permits, which must be also be paid for.  According to the U.S. CBP site, "Soil is considered the loose surface material of the earth in which plants, trees, and scrubs grow. In most cases, the soil consists of disintegrated rock with an admixture of organic material and soluble salts. Soil is prohibited entry unless accompanied by an import permit. Soil must be declared and the permit must be verified.

I have no idea how you would prove that your soil is OK, and a quick Google check did not enlighten me, but I am assured that it can be done.  I'd guess it falls under the category of things kids shouldn't try at home when their parents are not around.

[Update: I still haven't got it right, a knowledgeable reader advises:
"However, soil is regularly brought from Canada into Point Roberts, either by PR trucks picking it up at nurseries or manufacturers in Canada  or by individuals taking their own trucks and coming back with a truck load.  We regularly use Augustine Soil & Fibre Ltd who deliver to Point Roberts.  They bring soils from Fraser Richmond Soil & Fibre.  The only fees we have to pay are for the product and the delivery, plus the commercial truck entry fee, when we meet the truck at the border.  No permits are required.

People can also bring in bags of topsoil, mulch, etc bought from nurseries of stores in Canada and Washington – no permits needed."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Before you know it they'll have us hosing off our tires and shoes at the border, lest we bring in some of that dreaded foreign soil material.