Are Man Eating Plants Real?

They have lived on this earth for millions of years; an ancient type of life far older than
humankind. We take them for granted as we pass by them on sidewalks, in parks, and eat them as food. Our seemingly benign neighbors of the vegetable kingdom are an essential part of life; however, some legends suggest that the innocent green leaves of plants may hide something sinister.

The First Legend Or Myth?

It was 1874 when german explorer Karl Leche was combing through the jungles of
Madagascar when he encountered a horrifying sight. He had found a local tribe known as the Mkodo, and they appeared to be in the process of performing a ritual. A woman lay in a trance, tied up. At her feet was a strange tree. All lay still, when suddenly the tree
sprung to life. It’s limbs flailed like snakes and the woman screamed. They wrapped
around her body and pulled her into their midst where she was eaten alive as a human

This account, as terrifying as it is, was a hoax allegedly written by Edmund Spencer and
published in the New York World on April 26th, 1874. Though this tale was discredited;
Chase Osborn, a former governor of Michigan, claimed in his book that the tale was well
known in Madagascar. He stated, “I do not know whether this tigerish tree really exists or
whether the blood curdling stories about it are pure myth. It is enough for my purpose if
its story focuses your interest upon one of the least known spots of the world.”

Various other legends have popped up throughout time discussing similar legends of similar plants, known for eating people.

Another old example is that of the 1887 book Sea and Land, author J.W. Buel described a plant native to Africa and Central America called the Yateveo. This name came from the hissing sound which the plant would make similar to the Spanish phrase “Ya-te-veo.” Meaning “I see you.” It supposedly had poison spines that resembled snakes that would grab any and all animals that come near it. However, this story has never been confirmed.

So are they real?

In a world so vast it’s hard to say with certainty that something like this doesn’t exist. Perhaps we just haven’t discovered or rediscovered the plant in the modern times.

If you’re interested in the various legends we could find discussing man eating plants. Watch this video:

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