Thursday, April 17, 2008

Intellectual Propagaty

I was at the supermarket last night and took a look at some houseplants which were on sale. Need some plants for the office. To my eye they were just normal generic-looking houseplants with broad green leaves. $16.99. Then I spied a notice printed on plastic ribbon attached to each plant, reading "THIS IS A PATENTED PLANT. PROPAGATION PROHIBITED. U.S. PATENT #384930236".

Okay-- for real? They have patented a houseplant? And they are going to intimidate me into not propagating it? So, if I snip off a cutting and put it in a mason jar of water on my windowsill, I am committing a crime? What if the plant decides to propagate itself-- suppose is sends out tendrils into the soil of the next pot over, and sprouts a new plant? Am I on the hook for that? Am I required to actively suppress propagation of the plant, or just obliged not to encourage it?

The whole business made me sad. Soon kids will be going to juvie for growing avocado-pit plants, and I will have to sneak out under cover of darkness to do the annual re-seeding of morning glories along the backyard fence. And God help you if the FBI raids your home and finds old potatoes sprouting in the back of your kitchen cabinet...


Anonymous Anonymous said...

i have a clove of garlic in my garlic 'n onion bowl on my counter that has new green growth meandering out of the top. don't report me, but i might plant it. and then i'll never have to buy garlic again! aha! take THAT hannaford!

4/17/08, 9:34 PM  
Blogger brushfiremedia said...

A sad world we live in...

4/18/08, 7:11 AM  
Anonymous ladyk73 said...

Giggles! They have the same warning on some fish! Better make sure no fishy hot love happens in the fish bowl! The warning is for those genetically modified glow fish.

I used to work in a plant nursery. Yep, all them different cultivers are patented. So if you want pretty unusual better not allow them to go to seed!


I am sure the patent laws only apply to commerical propagation for profit!

But...I'll be watching you!

4/18/08, 2:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's the old "greed" principle at work.... huh? The bottom line is G R E E D !! But I agree with you too, guess they think they can intimidate us.

4/18/08, 3:28 PM  

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