bringing seeds into Costa Rica

Legoguerin :

Oh no!

Legoguerin since you didn't use the Quote button we don't know what you're responding to when you say "Oh no!"

As long as I'm here, now that I've lived here a while, I will add some info that I've learned.

1) bringing in seeds. I "know someone" who's done it many times with no problems at all. They don't even have to be hidden, in fact I think it's best just to scatter them around in various places in various pieces of luggage. IMHO.
Many things are not available here and that's why people bring them in. They never heard of kale where I live. They don't have lavender or certain chili peppers or giant sunflowers or numerous other things one may want including certain varieties of tomatoes or etc veges ...

2) Leaf cutter ants. Mirex works sometimes but not always. Some won't carry it back to the nest. Somehow they know better.
There is NO magic bullet to kill leaf cutters that I have heard of. Sure you can dynamite them and burn them out but more will come. It's a constant battle if you live in certain areas.

Just because Costa Rica in general uses a lot of chemicals on food and weeds and has bad environmental practices in many places, that doesn't mean you can't or shouldn't do better and teach the locals better practices. Yes they use roundup indiscriminately because they don't know better. Teach them a better way and explain why. Yes they drain black water into the rivers and ocean, so educate them as best you can why that's bad.

Nothing against Ticos but the truth is they just are not well educated in general, especially regarding things like chemicals in foods (preservatives, pesticides etc) and protecting the water and soil and air. They're better than they were though so progress is happening, it's just slow.

Where I live, when we don't use certain foods because of the preservatives they look at us like we're crazy. They have never thought of reading the labels for such things, or to avoid sugar in orange juice or canned corn for example. BPA, forget it!

They are learning. Now I see some organic markets and organic vege vendors at the farmers market. Health stores are popping up. But they have a long way to go and yes they use tons of chemicals on crops and weeds.

Thank you for replying.  Will see what happens with the leaf cutter ants and the use of Dynamite.  Just started the battle and will let you know if it does work.  Again thank you for getting back to me and I will use quote button next time.

This might be a useful link.

Put the seeds in your luggage and they will get through.
If they are in closed packages they will be less suspicious.
We bring in Sun flower seeds.

Sanbuenaventuraman :

Put the seeds in your luggage and they will get through.
If they are in closed packages they will be less suspicious.
We bring in Sun flower seeds.

We just brought in sunflower seeds, too! Because here the sunflowers they sell are tiny little things! LOL.
We also brought in kale an some other stuff we didn't find here.

TerrynViv :

This might be a useful link.

This works good for some ants, but not for leaf cutters in my experience.
The best thing we've found is mirex BUT it's a pain because you have to find the ants actually eating (usually at night around 10pm) and put some in their path.
If they take the bait back to the nest, great, you win!
But many are smart enough not to take it and then you are left without much choice.
They just ate everything a friend of mine bought at the vivero the other day, and they won't eat the mirex!
They are eating our lemon trees right now!

We have brought in unopened packets of seeds many times with no problems.  However, everything here is CR depends on who you get that day.  I know a person or two who have had seeds taken from then when they go thru customs in CR.   So I would say, yes, bring them with a very slight chance they might be taken from you.

I'm so missing my yellow crookneck squash.  I now have seeds here.  Are you sucessfully growing them?  If so, can you share your location?  I'm in PZ at about 3,000 in the mountains.  We have plenty of sun and more than average rain for the area.  What times of year do you plant, etc.?

Okay, I'm new hear and just learning how to post, etc.  Someone many posts before indicated they were successfully growing yellow crookneck squash so that's who my last post was intended for.  Please be patient with

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