Remember Audrey II?
I’m sure The Purcell Register’s film critic, David Stull, could fill you in.
Or just google “Little Shop of Horrors.”
That’s what I did when folks around the world started receiving surprise packets from China which supposedly contained jewelry the recipient hadn’t ordered, but instead were filled with unidentified seeds.
Across the land the warnings sounded as government horticulturists and agriculture officials pleaded with the public to destroy the seeds.
Presumably before those seeds could take root, destroying native plants and throwing our entire ecosystem into the tilt position.
Whatever you do, don’t you dare plant a single one, was the cry heard round the United States and in other countries.
Well, it appears a woman in Kentucky did plant the seeds, thinking they were sent by someone in her gift-giving group on social media.
Realizing her mistake, the woman contacted the state department of agriculture and was told to destroy the plant by fire or double bag it and put it in the trash.
I was a little surprised that no botanist attempted to identify it first.
Granted what sprouted in the flower pot on her porch didn’t look especially remarkable or dangerous.
But one never knows. Especially when tinkering with the cardinal rule of gardeners everywhere – a weed is a plant out of place.
Think kudzu. That plant’s introduction in the U.S. was a good idea gone wrong.
Now kudzu was at one time prized for its fast growth and spread and was deliberately planted in the South to control erosion.
No one expected it to swallow entire forests, to say nothing of telephone poles, fences, buildings, stalled cars and, possibly, slow moving livestock.
Just like the timid florist in “Little Shop of Horrors” never expected the innocnt-looking Venus flytrap he acquired from a Chinese flower shop had a voracious appetite sated only by human blood and body parts.
Here’s a partial spoiler alert for you. Things in “Little Shop of Horrors” don’t exactly end well for humanity. Yes, Audrey (the human) and Seymour, the timid florist, marry. And Audrey II is killed.
But as Seymour and Audrey move into their cozy cottage, they don’t notice an Audrey II seedling watching them from the flower bed.
Think about that if you get any unsolicited mystery seeds from China.
And whatever you do, don’t you dare plant a single one or we all may regret it.