History Main / AlienKudzu

8th Apr '18 12:07:18 PM Pilomotor
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* Some plants could be considered that if they weren't so damned useful. Potatoes for instance originally come from high up in the Andes (and most types of them do not grow anywhere else), but almost everybody who lives in a temperate climate can tell tales of thrown away potatoes suddenly germinating on their compost heap. Those tubers are hard to kill easy to grow and so nutritious that Ireland basically ran on them for a century, until a disease killed most of them and caused one of the worst famines in European history.

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** It's important to note that cyanobacteria ''continues'' to be Alien Kudzu, even today. Under certain conditions, cyanobacteria can reproduce explosively, creating [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Algal_bloom harmful algal blooms]] that can have dramatic ecological effects, like killing off every fish in a lake. Some species of cyanobacteria also produce [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyanotoxin cyanotoxins]] that can cause health problems for humans, which is especially concerning when cyanobacteria grow in water reservoirs used for human consumption, as the water undergoes treatment prior to consumption that removes harmful microbes like cyanobacteria, but ''doesn't'' remove any cyanotoxins that may have been released into the water.
* Some plants could be considered that if they weren't so damned useful. Potatoes for instance originally come from high up in the Andes (and most types of them do not grow anywhere else), but almost everybody who lives in a temperate climate can tell tales of thrown away potatoes suddenly germinating on their compost heap. Those tubers are hard to kill kill, easy to grow grow, and so nutritious that Ireland basically ran on them for a century, until a disease killed most of them and caused one of the worst famines in European history.
8th Feb '18 6:47:10 PM nombretomado
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Compare ExplosiveBreeder, which is a similar concept applied to animals. Named after the same plant as KudzuPlot, but [[IThoughtItMeant the two tropes are unrelated]]. It's also [[IThoughtItMeant not to be confused with]] the NewspaperComic of [[ComicStrip/{{Kudzu}} the same name]].

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Compare ExplosiveBreeder, which is a similar concept applied to animals. Named after the same plant as KudzuPlot, but [[IThoughtItMeant [[JustForFun/IThoughtItMeant the two tropes are unrelated]]. It's also [[IThoughtItMeant [[JustForFun/IThoughtItMeant not to be confused with]] the NewspaperComic of [[ComicStrip/{{Kudzu}} the same name]].
5th Feb '18 6:43:09 AM MawofWinter
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* In Finland the local plant invader is Lupine. It was imported in 1700s as a garden plant. Since then it has spread everywhere and there are very few stretches of roadside that don't have at least some Lupines. Lupines have a nasty tendency to pump so much nitrogen into the soil that it chokes just about any other kind of native plant, except the ones which were already nuisances, like nettles and willowherbs.
28th Jan '18 11:10:31 PM Xtifr
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* Thomas Disch's ''The Genocides'' has the Earth transformed in a monoculture for alien crops, and the aliens consider humans to be pests and try to exterminate them. [[spoiler:They succeed.]]

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* Thomas Disch's Creator/ThomasMDisch's ''The Genocides'' has the Earth transformed in a monoculture for alien crops, and the aliens consider humans to be pests and try to exterminate them. [[spoiler:They succeed.]]
12th Dec '17 1:47:09 PM Lymantria
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** In [[TheOtherRainforest the Pacific Northwest]], there's been a lot of work done for decades to prevent a pair of European plants, Scotch Broom and Gorse, from becoming this. Success has been poor: Scotch Broom is toxic to local herbivores while Gorse happens to be MadeOfExplodium -- it catches fire ''very'' easily and burns extremely hot.

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** In [[TheOtherRainforest the Pacific Northwest]], Northwest, there's been a lot of work done for decades to prevent a pair of European plants, Scotch Broom and Gorse, from becoming this. Success has been poor: Scotch Broom is toxic to local herbivores while Gorse happens to be MadeOfExplodium -- it catches fire ''very'' easily and burns extremely hot.
24th Oct '17 1:37:08 PM Theriocephalus
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* "The Voice In The Night" by Creator/WilliamHopeHodgson features AlienKudzu lichen that covers an isolated desert island. It's a good thing that it's isolated, because the lichen grows on flesh as easily as rock: possibly the TropeMaker for combining AlienKudzu with TheVirus.

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* "The Voice In The Night" by Creator/WilliamHopeHodgson features AlienKudzu Alien Kudzu lichen that covers an isolated desert island. It's a good thing that it's isolated, because the lichen grows on flesh as easily as rock: possibly the TropeMaker for combining AlienKudzu Alien Kudzu with TheVirus.



** Infinity Vine in ''TabletopGame/{{Spelljammer}}''. A leafless plant that ''very'' quickly multiplies its mass until it covers everything that got light and air with 10' thick layer (there's not enough light beyond this). Of course, if it's a ship and the extra mass is more than its power source can pull, it's stuck for good. The vine is easily destroyed, but regrows, and is immune to all diseases and poisons. Due to this magical metabolism it vanishes just as fast on planets and instantly dries up in the Flow--the only reason why the whole Prime Material Plane isn't buried under 10 feet of green ropes.

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** Infinity Vine in ''TabletopGame/{{Spelljammer}}''. A leafless plant that ''very'' quickly multiplies its mass until it covers everything that got light and air with 10' thick layer (there's not enough light beyond this). Of course, if it's a ship and the extra mass is more than its power source can pull, it's stuck for good. The vine is easily destroyed, but regrows, and is immune to all diseases and poisons. Due to this magical metabolism it vanishes just as fast on planets and instantly dries up in the Flow--the Flow -- the only reason why the whole Prime Material Plane isn't buried under 10 feet of green ropes.



* ''VideoGame/StarControl 2'' mentions "Deep Children", modified Mycon used to terraform. They rapidly grow into lower part of crust and provoke tectonic activity until the planet is a FireAndBrimstoneHell comfortable for Mycon, but not for original species of Mycon's preferred targets--organic rich water-based worlds.

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* ''VideoGame/StarControl 2'' mentions "Deep Children", modified Mycon used to terraform. They rapidly grow into lower part of crust and provoke tectonic activity until the planet is a FireAndBrimstoneHell comfortable for Mycon, but not for original species of Mycon's preferred targets--organic rich targets -- organic-rich water-based worlds.



* The TropeNamer is [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kudzu kudzu]], aka The Vine That Ate the South. Brought over from Japan to the [[DeepSouth Southeastern United States]] to prevent soil erosion along railroad trackbeds, it was quickly realized that it grows over large patches of ground, choking out native plant life by denying it sunlight and nutrients. It also loves growing over trees, choking them to death in shade, pulling down branches, or just outright ''uprooting the tree''. It happily does the same to utility poles and power cables, which causes all SORTS of problems. Its growth is roughly a foot per day; take a trip for a week, come back to find it's covered an entire wall of your house. And the seeds can take years to germinate; if you can kill the notoriously hardy thing, you'll often find out a year later that its children have returned for revenge. Oh, [[GoneHorriblyRight and it prevents soil erosion along railroad trackbeds]].
** Then we have [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imperata_cylindrica Imperata cylindrica]], also known as Cogon Grass. This literal red weed chokes more acreage in the southeast than even the more infamous Kudzu and, while not quite impaction on the environment as Kudzu, it is unusually flammable.
** [[http://www.greatwesternmedicineshow.com/humor/kudzu.htm So easy to grow!]]
** Going back farther, when European settlers first came to the Americas, they brought several plant species with them. Normally not thought of as being aggressive, when introduced to the environment, they went absolutely berserk. Before kudzu, the Deep South was overrun with peach trees (see the correlation between peaches and the state of Georgia,) and Argentina was smothered under feral spinach. Though, being edible, these weren't as bad as kudzu. (Technically, [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kudzu#Food_and_beverage kudzu is also edible]], but that requires a lot of processing and is a pain.)
** In [[TheOtherRainforest the Pacific Northwest]], there's been a lot of work done for decades to prevent a pair of European plants, Scotch Broom and Gorse, from becoming this. Success has been poor: Scotch Broom is toxic to local herbivores while Gorse happens to be MadeOfExplodium- it catches fire ''very'' easily and burns extremely hot.

to:

* The TropeNamer is [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kudzu kudzu]], aka The the Vine That Ate the South. Brought over from Japan to the [[DeepSouth Southeastern United States]] to prevent soil erosion along railroad trackbeds, it was quickly realized that it grows over large patches of ground, choking out native plant life by denying it sunlight and nutrients. It also loves growing over trees, choking them to death in shade, pulling down branches, or just outright ''uprooting the tree''. It happily does the same to utility poles and power cables, which causes all SORTS of problems. Its growth is roughly a foot per day; take a trip for a week, come back to find it's covered an entire wall of your house. And the seeds can take years to germinate; if you can kill the notoriously hardy thing, you'll often find out a year later that its children have returned for revenge. Oh, [[GoneHorriblyRight and it prevents soil erosion along railroad trackbeds]].
** Then we have [[http://en.''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imperata_cylindrica Imperata cylindrica]], cylindrica]]'', also known as Cogon Grass. This literal red weed chokes more acreage in the southeast than even the more infamous Kudzu and, while not quite impaction on the environment as Kudzu, it is unusually flammable.
** [[http://www.greatwesternmedicineshow.com/humor/kudzu.htm So easy to grow!]]
** Going back farther, when European settlers first came to the Americas, they brought several plant species with them. Normally not thought of as being aggressive, when introduced to the environment, they went absolutely berserk. Before kudzu, the Deep South was overrun with peach trees (see the correlation between peaches and the state of Georgia,) Georgia), and Argentina was smothered under feral spinach. Though, That said, being edible, these weren't as bad as kudzu. (Technically, [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kudzu#Food_and_beverage kudzu is also edible]], but that requires a lot of processing and is a pain.)
** In [[TheOtherRainforest the Pacific Northwest]], there's been a lot of work done for decades to prevent a pair of European plants, Scotch Broom and Gorse, from becoming this. Success has been poor: Scotch Broom is toxic to local herbivores while Gorse happens to be MadeOfExplodium- MadeOfExplodium -- it catches fire ''very'' easily and burns extremely hot.



* [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking Zucchini]]. They will overrun your garden if you aren't careful.
** So will their cousins, pumpkins.

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* [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking Zucchini]]. They will overrun your garden if you aren't careful.
**
careful. So will their cousins, pumpkins.pumpkins, and certain wild-type cultivars of strawberries -- which spread by sending out runners that root themselves and grow into a new plant, so that each plant can generate two or three new ones every year -- can be rather surprisingly challenging to keep contained.



* [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_knotweed Japanese knotweed]], as well as its close relative, Giant knotweed. Both are popular garden plants that can quickly fill up the whole garden if allowed to grow unchecked.
** In the UK, a single plant growing in your garden can ruin your house's mortgage value and it has to be disposed of like a biohazard rather than disposed of in landfill. It can also reappear up to 10 years after being dug up if any root fragments are missed. "Popular" isn't the right term...
* [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mentha_spicata ''Mentha spicata'']] or spearmint is grown in pots, otherwise it does this - but underground.

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* [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_knotweed Japanese knotweed]], as well as its close relative, Giant knotweed. Both are popular garden plants that can quickly fill up the whole garden if allowed to grow unchecked.
**
unchecked. In the UK, a single plant growing in your garden can ruin your house's mortgage value and it has to be disposed of like a biohazard rather than disposed of in landfill. It can also reappear up to 10 years after being dug up if any root fragments are missed. "Popular" isn't the right term...
* [[http://en.''[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mentha_spicata ''Mentha spicata'']] Mentha spicata]]'', or spearmint spearmint, is grown in pots, otherwise it does this - -- but underground.



* While neither fungi nor plants, the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quagga_mussel Quagga mussel]] and [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zebra_mussel Zebra Mussel]] fit this trope to a T. They are invasive species that came to the Americas in ship ballast tanks, they [[ExplosiveBreeder expand]] [[MeatMoss onto any hard surface they can find]] (which has caused problems when they clog intake pipes), and because of their sheer numbers they consume huge amounts of food, which destroys the phytoplankton population, slowly starves the population of other aquatic creatures (who feed on the phytoplankton) [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking and causes the water to become very clear]].
* Many in the US fight the annual battle with crabgrass and dandelions in their lawns.

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* While neither fungi nor plants, the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quagga_mussel Quagga mussel]] and [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zebra_mussel Zebra Mussel]] fit this trope to a T. They are invasive species that came to the Americas as larvae in ship ballast tanks, they [[ExplosiveBreeder expand]] [[MeatMoss onto any hard surface they can find]] find]], hard rocks and metal and muddy bottoms alike (which has caused problems when they clog intake pipes), and because of their sheer numbers they consume huge amounts of food, which destroys the phytoplankton population, slowly starves the population of other aquatic creatures (who feed on the phytoplankton) [[ArsonMurderAndJaywalking and causes the any body of water to become very clear]].
they settle in. This in turn can cause the collapse of the native food webs of the areas they infest, as the removal of the phytoplankton essentially starves the entire food web from the bottom up.
* Many in the US U.S. fight the annual battle with crabgrass and dandelions in their lawns.



* Technically, none of us would be here if not for the original AlienKudzu, cyanobacteria (a.k.a. "blue-green algae"). Before they evolved, Earth's atmosphere was virtually free of oxygen and anaerobic Archaea dominated its ecosystems. Once they started spewing out volatile oxygen as a byproduct of photosynthesis, they took over the world and drove the oxygen-intolerant Archaea into niche habitats like hot springs, hypersaline waters, or deep under the ocean floor. The chloroplasts of modern plants are their distant descendants, so one could argue that ''all'' vegetation is AlienKudzu from the Archaea's POV.

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* Technically, none of us would be here if not for the original AlienKudzu, Alien Kudzu, cyanobacteria (a.k.a. "blue-green algae"). Before they evolved, Earth's atmosphere was virtually free of oxygen and anaerobic Archaea dominated its ecosystems. Once they started spewing out volatile oxygen as a byproduct of photosynthesis, they took over the world and drove the oxygen-intolerant Archaea into niche habitats like hot springs, hypersaline waters, or deep under the ocean floor. The chloroplasts of modern plants are their distant descendants, so one could argue that ''all'' vegetation is AlienKudzu Alien Kudzu from the Archaea's POV.
30th Sep '17 1:18:33 PM karstovich2
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** The famine that hit Ireland also hit other parts of Europe, particularly France, Germany, and the Austrian Empire. However, both of those countries still grew significant amounts of grains, while in Ireland the landowners had converted most of the grain-growing land to cattle-raising land to satisfy English demand for beef, cheese, and butter. On the other hand, though, France, Germany, the Austrian Empire, and non-Austrian Italy also suffered bad grain harvests in the mid-1840s. This is why the decade is often called the Hungry Forties, and also a big reason why a wave of revolutions hit Europe in 1848.
5th Sep '17 6:46:17 PM DavidK93
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** And in the spinoff ''Series/Class2016'', in the two-part episode "Co-Owner of a Lonely Heart"/"Brave-ish Heart", Earth is beset by rapidly reproducing flesh-eating pink flowers resembling cherry blossoms; their sheer volume will suffocate anyone they don't eat. They are never given a name other than "petals."
18th Jul '17 7:05:11 AM SimYouLater
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Compare ExplosiveBreeder, which is a similar concept applied to animals. Named after the same plant as KudzuPlot, but [[IThoughtItMeant the two tropes are unrelated]].

to:

Compare ExplosiveBreeder, which is a similar concept applied to animals. Named after the same plant as KudzuPlot, but [[IThoughtItMeant the two tropes are unrelated]]. It's also [[IThoughtItMeant not to be confused with]] the NewspaperComic of [[ComicStrip/{{Kudzu}} the same name]].
13th Jul '17 10:53:14 PM BattleMaster
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* If kudzu is the vine that ate the South, then Himalayan blackberry is the vine that ate the Pacific Northwest.

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* If kudzu is the vine that ate the South, then Himalayan blackberry is the vine that ate the Pacific Northwest. Fortunately, it's not quite as fast growing and isn't toxic or prone to exploding in flames, but the thorns that grow on its vines and leaves make it unpopular with most browsing animals. Birds and small mammals love its delicious berries, but this just means that its seeds are deposited in a nice pile of fertilizer. It does have one major enemy that's proven quite effective at controlling it, though: goats. Goats will happily eat its leaves and even vines, quickly destroying the plant. So by putting up some temporary fences around an overgrown area and leaving goats to take care of the vines, it can be quickly eliminated with relatively low impact to the environment (compared to other methods of control such as burning it or using chemical herbicides).
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