It shall be unlawful to sell or offer for sale any plants or nursery stock unless such plants or nursery stock are viable and meet the basic requirements of a viable plant or viable nursery stock at the time and place of sale. Nursery stock or plants that are capable of living and accomplishing the purpose for which they are grown, whether foliage, flowers, fruit or special use, shall be considered viable. The basic requirements of viable nursery stock or viable plants are as follows:
(1) They must be free of physiological and pathological defects to the extent that all essential parts may function normally.
(2) The root system must have adequate roots or the ability to produce them to support normal performance of all essential parts of the plant. The root system must be adequately protected to prevent excessive loss of moisture while in storage and transit.
(3) The trunk and branches must be capable of transporting fluids throughout the plant and be free from any infirmity of a permanent nature which would interfere with this function. Any damaged branches must be capable of being pruned without seriously deterring growth of the plant.
(4) The leaves must be capable of performing essential manufacturing functions, such as photosynthesis. In the case of deciduous plants, when void of leaves, they must have the ability to put out new leaves capable of functioning normally.