Monstrous Tumbleweeds Are Burying Trucks and Houses in Utah

Who knew tumbleweeds could be such a big problem?
Fox 13 News Utah

We all know what a tumbleweed is, right? The funny-looking dried-up plant balls are typically seen rolling across desolate landscapes in Western movies, accompanied by Ennio Morricone scores. These aren’t just movie props, of course, as southern and western states see real tumbleweeds all the time. However, I’m not sure many of us have seen tumbleweeds like this.

In Utah, winter winds can create enormous tumbleweed storms that block roads and bury entire houses and vehicles. Over the weekend, winds from a winter storm in South Jordan, Utah blew thousands of tumbleweeds across parts of the city and through neighborhoods. It’s shocking to see tumbleweeds pile so high that they completely block out the first story of several homes on a single block. It’s like watching a tidal wave of dusty plants pile up outside peoples’ front doors.

You might think they’re just light, dusty plants so who cares, they’ll just blow away. However, they’re actually quite a problem. For starters, they hurt. Tumbleweeds are thorny, prickly things and if they blow into you, they burt. They aren’t exactly dangerous but isn’t exactly comfortable to get hit by one, either. Secondly, when hundreds or even thousands of them pile up, they’re difficult to move. South Jordan city workers had to get plow trucks and even excavators to move all of the tumbleweeds. City officials asked residents to only use specified tumbleweed dumpsters to dispose of them.

When they pile up on a road, they can completely block vehicles from passing through, too. In a video posted by littlewedgies on Instagram, you can see a plow truck attempt to drive through a sea of tumbleweeds and it simply disappears under a mountain of them. If other cars were to drive through such a tumbleweed blockade, they’d suffer the same fate, or worse, which could be dangerous. Not to mention they’d scratch the hell out of the cars.

However, some Utah residents are turning this into a business opportunity. According to Fox 13 News Utah, some residents are collecting the tumbleweeds and making things out of them to sell on Etsy and eBay. Someone reportedly even paid $2,000 for a tumbleweed chandelier.

Who knew something as seemingly harmless as tumbleweeds could be such a big problem?

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