If you haven't been following the news out of rural North Carolina this week, you're probably not aware of the most incredible kudzu story in recent memory.
Kudzu, known as the "vine that ate the South," is an invasive weed that has become the bane of conservationists from Florida to Missouri. When confronted by the vine, most people will do whatever it takes to kill the plant before it swallows their entire property under a blanket of leaves and shoots.
But what to do when the kudzu in question resembles Christ on the cross? That's what residence in Kinston, North Carolina, are pondering this week when a godly patch of kudzu was discovered growing on a telephone pole.
As Kinston resident Kent Hardison told the town's newspaper, The Free Press
"I glanced at it, and it looks like Jesus," Hardison said. "I thought, 'You can't spray Jesus with Roundup.'"
But is that really true? Can you not throw Roundup on Jesus-looking kudzu? For that we turned to St. Louis-based Monsanto, maker of the famous herbicide. Here's what the company had to say:
Yes, Roundup will kill kudzu and most any other weed thrown its way.
"The family of Roundup brand agricultural herbicides represents one option for controlling invasive species," says Monsanto spokesman, John Combest, who notes that the Missouri Department of Conservation suggests Roundup formulations for controlling the weed in the Show-Me State.
In Kinston, though, it's up to the telephone company to decide whether or not to spray Roundup on Jesus. "Most utilities have their own best management practices for controlling invasive species," says Combest.