Re: Call for European members
Chong, as our friends say, unfortunately there are lots of problems.
Few weeks ago, while searching for a Blue Java, which is my dream to find it yet, I wrote to a nursery in the Usa which was said to delivery in Europe. They answered me that there would be no problem provided that I buy around 10000 plants! (five zeros, not joking). I am not criticizing them, they for sure have reasons to act this way. But the very fact they have reasons give you an idea of how much inconvenient can be such kind of shipping.
Of course this was an exagerated example. But in general it's very difficult. I just received a corm from a good friend in California and it was possible for me to receive it without many problems, but only because he was able to provide a phytosanitary certificate. I give thanks the corm arrived safe, but it was demoralizing to see how they work at the customs. I was calling them with no answers for days and after I compiled and sent them the forms, the day after they sent me again the void forms to compile because one office had not communicated with the other.
Moreover, for me here, with the dis-organization of Italian bureaus, I would not even know where to start to find out where and how to get such a sanitary inspection on my plants. They would drive me crazy for sure.
Just to give you an idea of how Italian institutions work: few years ago I was accused by two cops (who had personal problems with me for reasons nothing to do with laws) of selling certain books without license. I had the books in a suitcase and they were pretending that I was selling them in the streets. Since there were not two equal books and there were testimonies on my behalf, and I was denied a lawyer in the first instance, my lawyer which I was able to call later told me there would no problem in winning the case. However the case is still pending and the books are still in the police station AFTER 6 YEARS. Of course it can seem superficial to quote this example which concerns another institution. But this is an example of how things work in Italy when you come to bureaucracy.
Trust me my region in the far south of Italy is wonderful. A south European=north African landscape with wonderful climate and lot of crops all year round and many subtropical things you can grow, and lot of heartful people. But you better not enter a office.
Sorry for the many comments. However, Chong, if you have particular facilities for shipping, or know different ways, I would be very interested in TX Star if you are in our local variety. Let me know also through pm if you like.
Have a nice day!