Monday, June 7, 2010

What a Wonder or Wonderful Vine

About two weeks ago Sunny Wieler, in Stone Art Blog, posted some very funny, photoshopped snaps of giant Gunneras taking over the world. These Gunneras can grow over ten feet tall with a leaf span of six feet.

For information and pictures of Gunneras you can click on Stone Art Blog, a professional, very informative and interesting blog.

In America's southeastern states we have a kudzu (Pueraria lobata) vine that was originally imported in 1876, from Japan for the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition as an ornamental plant, or was intended to control erosion. Regardless of which reason was the first, the plant was imported and is thriving in, or as some would say, growing over the south. Under the right conditions, which the southeast usually provides, kudzu can grow one to two feet a day. Kudzu has become a problem in other countries also. This plant does not seem to have any natural enemies, as long as you do not consider man.


Whether its swallowing a car,


climbing a pole,


taking possession of a bridge,


or creeping up a hill and encapsulating a house (yes, there's a house in there), these photos are not photoshopped.

While kudzu is a forage for livestock and a vine for making baskets, you can enjoy it yourself by making tea, bread and jelly, lotions and soaps. Why folks have created recipes for kudzu bread, quiche and even fried kudzu leaves to name a few. It is being studied for its medicinal use in treating cancer, headaches, tinnitus, allergies and other health issues. Kudzu may become a valuable asset for the production of cellulosic ethanol.

Perhaps this pesky, pervasive plant will become a cultivated, cash crop.

photo credits:
Thank you, Sunny, for the use of your photos from Stone Art Blog.
Rome, Taj Mahal, Sphinx/Pyramid.
1. Dickel Sippers
2. Writers Forensics Blog
Lady in Basket, "Queen of Kudzu" from Max Shores


  1. That is quite scary that you may just wake up one morning to find you are buried under a creeper! Lets hope the medicinal uses are good and cultivation will be kept under control. Diane

  2. Growing 1 to 2 feet a day? You could almost watch it grow in front of your eyes. I hope they find some really great uses for it. Keeping it under control would help the recession out, I would think. Thanks for sharing.

  3. That's a very determined plant with a mind of its own! I loved the photos, especially the untouched ones. Incredible!


  4. Wow that stuff is incredible, I am picturing the people who own that house going off on holidays and coming home to find there house like that. Thanks for the links to my blog and for your kind words, Sunny

  5. For a while we had some kudzu growing in the trees behind our house. My husband was determined to not let it gt out of control so he would go out regularly and conduct "kudzu wars" as he called it. He was successful because we don't have any now. Great pictures and enjoyed your post!

  6. Number 2 looks just like a woman in a dress holding a spoon.

    I see this every time I visit relatives in the south, it is absolutely astounding, I'm always at a loss for Words.

    Finding a Medicinal use for Kudza would be great. Making a tea, bread or jelly is quite interesting I can't Imagine what that would taste like" I guess I would have to try it.

    Hey! I forgot about the spider post Lol! I think I'm both Ethel and Lucy"