With what must have been a convoy of trucks, a band of thieves brazenly trespassed through a construction site and a wooded private land parcel to reach the back corner of BVA Horticultural. They cut the wire fencing, and stole 110,000 small, potted palms.
They knew what they were looking for as they stole only one type of plant. At BVA, located on 278 St, the burglars made off with over 2000 trays, each with 50 seedlings of the hard-to-find cateracterum and chamaedorea palms. The sought after palms are in short supply as this years crop, grown mostly from Texas seed, produced a mere 7% yield. BVA acquired their seed elsewhere, and had been nurturing the seedlings for six months. All of the plants had been presold and were to be loaded on trucks for delivery that very day. Many throughout the local horticulture community were aware that BVA was the only broker with palms.
Det. Jose Suarez of the Miami-Dade Ag Patrol said burglaries happen frequently at the nurseries. He encourages owners to make use of game cameras that immediately alert a phone if there is any intrusion at the site, and enables officers to respond while burglaries are in progress.
A $5,000 reward is being offered.
If you have information that could lead to the return of the palms or an arrest contact the Miami-Dade Ag Patrol at 786-218-8344.