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Re: looking for a good source for plants

> I'm in Regina, Sk.

According to Tropic'a web site, the closest store which carries Tropica
plants is in Saskatoon. [Aquarium and Pet Supply, Bay 18-15 Worobetz Place,
Saskatoon Saskatchewan S7L-6R4 306-382-2772] You _may_ be able to make some
arrangements with them to place a "group order" for Tropica plants (or any
others they might carry). Very few stores here will do mail order on plants
but if the order is big enough, you never know, and it certainly doesn't
hurt to try. You should be able to use the order numbers from the Tropica
web site to ID the plants.

Tropica plants are available at the wholesale level in Canada from 2 places
[Aquatic Plants Unlimited, 7010-105 Street,  T6H 2P1 Edmonton, Alberta
780-439-6599] and Aquarium Services here in Ontario. Aquarium Services may
only deal with their own franchise locations, so I'd try APU first.

If there is a LFS in Regina, you could always ask them to order plants from
APU for you. (They may need to set up an account). If any store knows there
is a demand for a product which is readily available to them, I would think
that they would be interested in the sale. Especially if you approach the
store as representing members of a club (many more possible sales, $$$) I
think that your chances would be better. If the LFS is unsure or afraid to
order, offer to pay in advance - I have only ever heard of one instance (and
I believe it to be an isolated one) where people weren't happy with a fresh
shipment of Tropica plants, so you would be pretty safe. These things are
shipped by air and packaged really, really well and Tropica's reputation for
well grown, heathy plants is well deserved.

Now, while Tropica plants are nice, they certainly aren't the only ones
selling good plants. Depending upon your local dealer's connections and the
market conditions in Regina (how many they can sell), there are lots of
other possibilities. I just obtained a bunch of plants which had come from
Oriental in Singapore and they are every bit as nice as Tropica's (plus,
they were a whole lot less expensive). But the store I deal with has a very
knowledgable plant person and a solid customer base for the unusual and the
rare, both in fish and plants. This is something that people in pretty much
_any_ area can develop for themselves, with a little bit of effort. Since
you have the group already (your aquarium club), it only takes convincing
your LFS to service the need. And there are _many_ nurseries in Florida. It
is easier for you if the LFS deals with the paperwork required to get them
into Canada.

There is also an aquatic nursery in Montreal which might be a source for
your local store or club. Belyjo plants are of very high quality (at least
the box of plants they sent to me were amazing) but their selection is
limited to the more common plants. They would probably be more than willing
to sell wholesale to your LFS.

Mail order is convenient at times, but it is usually much better, especially
when dealing with livestock and plants, in the long run if you are able to
develop a good relationship with your LFS which can work to your mutual

James Purchase

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