Agrumi breaks into Italy with its leaping dolphins

New Forest plant nursery Agrumi has made its first sale into Italy, beating Italian nurseries to win the work.

Owner Stanley Jackson said: "We were contacted by the mayor of a small town in Italy to make a pair of leaping dolphins in Ligustrum delavayanum for a school garden that has been redesigned by Smeraldo Garden."

He added: "The designers looked at the product from Pistoia but chose us instead. Even with the transport they found us competitive but the main reason they chose us is that we are able to realise their ideas exactly, which is to have the dolphins leaping through the flower planting that is there to represent the sea. Apparently Pistoia had dolphins ready to go but were reluctant to follow the designer's brief and make bespoke pieces to their specifications."

Agrumi has also produced a 3m bunny for Dobbies, store refits for Wyevale Garden Centres and works for Burford Garden Centre and Gavin Jones/Plantation/Clifton.

Basic standards - Actions outlined in report by Anthea McIntyre MEP

- Compulsory general surveillance by member states for plant pests and diseases. Surveillance is currently only required when emergency control measures are in place.

- Mandatory surveillance for specified priority pests. The UK Government is likely to press for UK potato pests to be included on the list.

- Harmonisation of the plant passport system. Passports will not be required for plants sold to non-professional users, such as gardeners, unless the transaction takes place over the internet.

- The introduction of preliminary assessments for plants imported from outside the EU that are likely to pose a risk. Should this test suggest an unacceptable pest or disease risk, the product would be provisionally banned from the EU pending a full risk assessment.

- Powers enabling the commission to quickly impose a temporary ban or restrict the movement of plants or products found to pose previously undetected risks.

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