Dublin: 2 °C Friday 26 February, 2021

Sheep-eating tree blooms in the UK

And just in case that wasn’t scary enough, it’s also 10 foot tall.

A PLANT CAPABLE of eating sheep is set to bloom for the first time in the UK.

The plant, with the formal name Puya chilensis, uses its “razor sharp spines to snare and trap sheep and another animals” according to the Royal Horticultural Society.

Though native to the Andes, it’s currently growing in the RHS Garden Wisley in Surrey, England  - and sounds deeply, deeply terrifying.

The Sheep-Eater (as we have dubbed it) hasn’t bloomed until now, despite growing to 10 foot in height since its plantation 15 years ago.

Cara Smith of the RHS says they are “really pleased that we’ve finally coaxed our Puya chilensis into flower. We keep it well fed with liquid fertiliser, as feeding it on its natural diet might prove a bit problematic.” Oh, you don’t say.

She also adds that parents “needn’t worry about the plant devouring their little ones.” We’ve got to be honest, that kind of talk has done little to reassure us about old Sheep-Eater.

It’s like the Little Shop of Horrors come to life, isn’t it?


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Fiona Hyde

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