Event in North Carolina highlights the good and bad of kudzu

In the Mountain XPress

by Kari Barrows

For a reviled invasive species, kudzu has a surprising number of fans. Nancy Basket is one. The artist first encountered the plant when she moved to South Carolina from the Pacific Northwest in 1989.

“Nobody liked it — everybody had jokes about it,” Basket recalls. “But I’m Cherokee on my dad’s side, German on my mother’s, and I have a different outlook. Just like some people can dog-whisper, I could kind of whisper to plants, and I felt kudzu was reaching out, trying to find somebody that liked it.”

Now Basket transforms kudzu into, well, baskets, along with paper, lampshades and artwork. She’ll be teaching some of her favorite tips and techniques as part of Krazy with Kudzu, an all-day event that looks at the good, the bad and the ugly of the plant. Planned for Saturday, Aug. 12, at Chimney Rock State Park, the event includes a hands-on basket-making workshop from 10 a.m. to noon (Pre-registration is required; see sidebar, More information, for details).

Other lectures and demonstrations will take place from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and are included with park admission.

Read the rest of the story in Mountain XPress.

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