Bringing plants/seeds/bulbs to the US

San Diego, CA(Zone 10b)

I have a question...I fly back home once every year, to Brazil. I always wondered if I could bring some seeds, etc. from there. Does anybody know what the procedure is? Everytime I go there I kick myself for not having all those wonderful tropical specimens!
I appreciate any clarification....

Thumbnail by robcorreia
's-Gravenhage, Netherlands(Zone 8b)

Just take a look at this:

You can take seeds of many species with you, as long as you don't take too many of them. 50 seeds of each species are the limit, if I remember correctly.

I just came home from a trip to St Lucia . I picked all kinds and put them in my bags and did not claim them. From what I read the seeds need to go through a proper cleaning,so pretty much you would just need to buy some at a nursery if you want to claim them.

San Diego, CA(Zone 10b)

Tuinkabouter, thank you for the link. It seems it applies for commercial imports for nursery material, is that right? The good thing is this is a good start to understand what plants are not allowed in any circumstances, so I will avoid those.
Flowerpower, I have thought of doing this before! And I might, but I need to be prepared in case I do it and they see it. What would you have said if they saw your plants? I still need to better understand what is the rule for non-commercial material, like cuttings, etc....

Fair Play, SC(Zone 7b)

Put the seeds in baggies IN the pockets of your pants pockets and fold the pants in the suitcase and WHO is going to check your pockets of all your clothes? But, for this tidbit of info, you could bring me some too. LOL Hehehe
(just a thought)

San Diego, CA(Zone 10b)

lol, great idea! Too bad we can't do that for cuttings too ey? ; )

Fair Play, SC(Zone 7b)

Why couldn't you? Wrap a wet paper towel around the stems and put in plastic baggie. Put in pockets.

Austin, TX(Zone 8b)

The PDF applies to small lot importers like me, too, insofar as it shows what you can and cannot receive in the US from outside the country.

I've had a Level 2 Access account on the USDA web site for a couple of years. Here is the URL to begin the process of getting your own USDA small seed lot importing permit . . .

There is no fee, and you can get seeds from outside the US without resorting to skullduggery and criminal behaviour. Really, who needs to be dragged away from the garden to answer legal hassles over getting seeds, right?

The Level 1 Access info on that web page may interest you, too ...

ATBTY ! ~ Łaz ;--)

Thumbnail by LazLo
(Zone 7a)

I hope y'all will humor me and my stupid question. I hear you about needing an APHIS permit to import seeds from foreign countries. But, my question, however redundant, is: do I also need a permit if I order seeds from a foreign seed company like Chiltern Seeds?

Thanking in advance for an answer,

Fair Play, SC(Zone 7b)

No , I bought seeds there and had no problems. They have a permit to ship to usa.

(Zone 7a)

Thank you mekos - did you know that Chiltern's Seeds is having a 1/3 off sale?

Fair Play, SC(Zone 7b)

I sure didn't but will go look thanks to you dear. I did get great germination on all their seeds. I would highly recomend them.

(Zone 7a)

They're usually too expensive for me, but the choice is still incredible even with their end-of-season sale - it's often hard to find flowers of such unusual varieties just by color grrr...interesting species, too

Fair Play, SC(Zone 7b)

I know, I love the unusual things that no one else has around here. I go to places like that on the internet and feel like I'm in heaven. I just want to bring a little of heaven home with me. After they bloom, you get seeds you can pass on, so they pay for themselves in time and you get to see and smell the blooms. Makes me appreciate those places more when I go look around here and can't find any of those plants for sale or trade.

Ellendale, DE(Zone 7a)

I am very interested in finding gardeners from countries outside the USA to trade seeds with.

It would bring me great pleasure to plant seeds that someone in a faraway country harvested for me, especially something that I could not get in any other fashion.

I am hoping that someone in such a faraway country would want something from Delaware, USA.

Please d-mail me, international friends. We can take it from there.



Barnesville (Charle, GA(Zone 8b)

Me too!!! I love to be able to plant something from another country.
Just to say, "hey, My plant friend from _____ sent me these", I love to
Share too.

's-Gravenhage, Netherlands(Zone 8b)

Would love to trade with you guys. However, I will be out of the country for three months. So if you still want to trade in March, I'll be there for you.

In the meantime, you could visit my site and see what I could do for you:

Barnesville (Charle, GA(Zone 8b)

Oh, you have some marvelous seeds.
Loved the pictures of your travels.
Have a safe trip.

Fair Play, SC(Zone 7b)

Hi Tuinkabouter, I love your seeds and can tell anyone, YOU DO HAVE A BEAUTIFUL GARDEN. I feel like I went to heaven everytime I look at your site. I have so much from you and I still drool everytime I look. If I ever win the lottery, I'm coming to look in person. You have a great time out while you are gone. Jan

's-Gravenhage, Netherlands(Zone 8b)

Thank you, guys!

Of course I took my seed snatching kit with me!

Barnesville (Charle, GA(Zone 8b)

What do you have in your seed snatching kit? we may want to make us one,
For around here to get seeds.

Fair Play, SC(Zone 7b)

Be sure to let us know what NEW seeds you snatch. Have fun.

College Station, TX(Zone 8b)

I found an interesting fruit in Mexico that I'd never seen and brought it back with me. I hid it in my "personal" items in my suitcase. Trust me one month without a washing machine and NOBODY was going to go there, lol. But karma being what it is, it wouldn't germinate and died. sigh, (probably for it's time in where it had traveled).

Carlisle, PA(Zone 6b)

Since the TSA stuff going on in airports, I think it is no longer possible to hide stuff in the pockets of what you are wearing but pack them in the suitcase, should be ok, in your pants pocket.

mulege, Mexico

I travel from Mexico to Ca. several times a year. Recently, the US has stopped allowing people to bring in seeds. I think this is a recent change in the reulations.


Whitesburg, TN(Zone 6b)

Find some heirloom cannabis seeds. Otherwise known as hemp. I will pay very good shipping for heirloom seeds of that species. Just in case it is legalized later, which will happen in 20 years or less, I am stocking up now.

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