Not long ago a friend asked why I had never addressed kudzu in the Angry Gardner. It is a legitimate question considering that kudzu has been recognized as the greatest invasive scourge of the South for the past 70 years or so.

Why have I never addressed it? Because what’s the fucking point? Kudzu has won. We have no real defense against it. Try to mow it. It will come right back with its pretty green leaves happily waving “fuck you” as it soaks up the sunshine. Use your weed eater when a vine creeps across a fence and it will wrap that woody son of a bitch around the weed eater spindle and choke it to death. Listen close and you can hear it sing “Kiss my ass” as the weed eater motor burns itself out in a cloud of black smoke. Kudzu is a botanical malignancy that spreads faster gonorrhea at the Manson Family commune.

But let’s look at the history: Kudzu is a native of Asia where it was used to make baskets, paper, clothing, and its powdered roots were used to thicken soup and even make flour. They also used it for an herbal medicine, although in my research I could not find a single fucking illness that it helped. It was first introduced to the United States in 1876 at the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition. Its flowers were pretty and smelled sweet and unscrupulous business twits were soon hawking it in mail order catalogs as a good thing to feed your cattle and fix nitrogen in your soil. Little did those old fools know that while it DID set nitrogen in your soil, making it richer, once kudzu is planted, you will never see that soil again.

In the 1930s, when America was suffering from the Great Depression and the government was looking for ways to keep people busy, some dumbass decided kudzu would be a great way to combat soil erosion in the South. What was then known as the Soil Erosion Service paid armies of misinformed idiots in the Civilian Conservation Corps to ramble across the former Confederate States of America and destroy what Sherman’s army missed by planting motherfucking kudzu everywhere.

And then some chucklefuck named Channing Cope, who was the son of a Baptist minister, and was a radio host, and a well-intentioned asshole, even created the Kudzu Club of America. Channing Cope became known as “The Kudzu Kid,” “The Father of Kudzu,” and, I guess, Johnny Fucking Kudzuseed, because, by 1943, he had 20,000 brainless morons signed up for the godawful plan plant eight million acres in kudzu across the South! Kudzu went on to cover more than a quarter of a million acres just in Alabama, which may be the only bright side to this story.

Then, in the 1950s, the same decade that gave us the movie “The Blob” (watch it and see if you can see a connection), somebody finally said, “Uh oh.”

Turns out kudzu spreads by runners, seeds and apparently voodoo magic. A vine can grow as much as a foot in one day. And once it has claimed a piece of real estate it can grow a taproot that can go six feet down and weigh 300 pounds. In other words, like that fat drunk neighbor who sits down on your couch and falls asleep, it ain’t going nowhere. You can spray it with poison, stomp it, burn it, hack it to pieces, and it’ll just laugh it off.

The ONLY thing that can successfully battle kudzu is goats. And, buddy, there’s a reason that Satan, in his formal portraits, has the head of a billy goat. They are pure evil and do whatever the fuck they want. Put them in a field of kudzu and they will first eat everything else of value in that field. When they have consumed and destroyed everything else, they will finally start in on the kudzu.

And if you’ve ever grown up on a farm with goats you know one thing: Goats will fuck up and fuck anything and everything they encounter. If you happen to fall down in a field of goats, you better be wearing pants. Thick pants! They have no mercy. Be it an elderly nun or a disabled child, they have no scruples to keep them from claiming their prey.

And after the goat has had its way with that nun, it will eat her rosary beads.

So there you have it. Keep your kudzu or risk being fucked by a goat.

The choice is yours.

Yours in Christ,

Russell Upsumdinar

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