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Old 04-14-2009
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Plants & Sailing

Man, I hope this is not a totally dumb question...please be patient with me...I have only been out of the country twice and that was by airplane and car. I have already searched the web but haven't been able to find a peep online (I might be using the wrong terms though). I suspect because the issue seems so dead and unmentionable that there is a very obvious yes or no answer.

I ordered a number of sailing guides/books and DVD's that might address this question, but I am either waiting for them to make it to the library or I thought I would ask and see what you guys know.

I have never heard of anyone cruising with a greenhouse on board (hydroponic/aeroponic or other low water use systems). I searched the web...mostly I get back really great provisioning lists for dried/canned goods.

The other things people say is to just eat local food, but is this doesn't seem cost effective to me (it would seem much more cost effective to travel with live food and eat it when you want). #1 Is it cost effective to eat wherever you travel?

#2 I understand that most countries have quarantine laws, but technically if the plants are always on board, in a greenhouse, would this fall under the quarantine laws?


Thank you so much for your time,

Meatpoet (Kiki)
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Old 04-14-2009
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If you are going to travel to another country or in the US if you go from states outside CA, your food WILL be confiscated upon hitting the dock! I know driving into Ca, they stop, look in ice boxes, refers in RV's, anything pretty much brought in is taken from you.

Just because it is always on your boat, does not mean it does not have some sort of insect, pest of some sort that that country does not want in or on there lands. While you may be able to take some live food with you, you may want to make sure it is eaten before you arrive or is dead or equal.

I'm in the landscape biz, and one does not just travel with these plants either, no matter where they are going. As you can take with you soil pests, be them legged varieties, fungus, bacterial, viral etc. Look up the rules to where you want to travel, assume it will not work until you figure out otherwise.

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Old 04-14-2009
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Keeping a greenhouse on a small sailboat is pretty tough to do... the salt air tends to do a job on a lot of plants... The plants may always be aboard, but pests, like insects, mold, etc are not going to recognize that fact...and may cause an issue.

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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

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Old 04-14-2009
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Thank you both, that is what I figured instinctively...but was hoping for something different.

blt2ski - I have never docked a boat in Cali. I have spent many long commutes from Phoenix to Los Angeles and back, in the car and they don't even stop traffic anymore, just waive you through at about 30 mph.

I always figured it was Cal. budget problems or (?) that maybe the rules had changed. Who knows...I do remember the MedFly scare from living in the Bay Area when I was little, but wasn't sure about quarantine laws...and they vary so widely from country to country, and seemingly from state to state.

I first noticed this with quarantine laws for dogs online states that some countries want rabies shots and a health guarantee, others want 60 day quarantine on boat, others still want 120 days in a land based facility...I guess where to draw the line (if the boat is considered acceptable quarantine for dogs, did this hold true for plants?).

Guess not, too bad, I am a really great cook and I love cooking fresh food, I was really looking forward to the potential of fresh produce on longer voyages.

sailingdog - I figured, being as absolutely stubborn as I am, I could figure out the technical aspects of salt air (the legality and environmental issues were what was bothering me).

Thank you both for the response.
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