DIGITAL AGE DIGGING
THE ONLINE WORLD CAN BE A HANDY TOOL FOR ENHANCING YOUR GARDEN
The big shifts in retailing and how we buy stuff are changing how we do business, even with a garden. In an online world, the average Joe Gardener has a forest of information to choose from, discover just about anything and finding that Google is his or her best go-to garden mate.
The social structure of garden sharing is also changing. You would remember you grandmother and mum traipsing around the garden to have a look at what was new and different plants that could be grown from a ‘slip’ to deprive a nursery of a sale. It was how it all happened. With all this came years of accumulated garden skills and techniques on how to grow plants, where they would grow and what to expect of them.
Beyond Google the Gardener, Facebook, Amazon, Gumntree and ebay each play a big part in what gardens will look like. Anything is possible, from a morsel of information to a few seeds of what someone is selling as a rare plant.
At the same time post and parcel distribution are growing exponentially to match the online business.
This is, of course, until someone interrupts the delivery process of your parcel because of quarantine regulations. Importing plants, their parts and seeds and possibly soils, is of keen interest at our borders, as you would know if you ever landed and bought a piece of fruit home by mistake. There you see the vigilance of the AQIS (Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service) swing into action to protect the natural biosecurity of this island nation.
When you buy seeds or plant parts take a look at the quarantine requirements. Some are OK to import, others are not for a variety of reasons. You need to check with BICON (Australian Bio Security Import Conditions) at www.agriculture.gov.au where it lists 20,000 plants you can look up and see their biosecurity status.
Often the source or the sale point of your purchase will often know what ‘we’ require in terms of importing. They should know if you need an Import Permit or Phytosanitary Certificate stamped by the exporter’s government bio agency (it’s a government to government thing).
A bit of homework will ensure you finish up receiving what you paid for and not a notification to say they were destroyed.