What You Need to Know About Tumbleweeds


Tumbleweeds.  What exactly are they and why do they seem to be in every western movie ever made?  Where could I get one and could I buy tumbleweeds? Who hasn’t wondered at some point about this strangely unique…tumbling weed.

What Is A Tumbleweed?

What is a tumbleweed exactly?  While the word tumbleweed is an Americanism formed sometime in the late 1800′s, the tumbleweed itself may be of Russian decent.  The tumbleweed is made from several plants including the Russian Thistle.  They are made when the plant’s branches are severed from the roots and blow about in the wind.  The name tumbleweed comes from the two words tumble and weed.  The first refers to the rolling motion these lifeless balls are known for and the second indicating that this plant was not cultivated for it’s usefulness.  In other words, tumbleweeds are a natural phenomenon, useful only for the amusement they bring to those who have the time to watch westerns.  I imagine settlers in the wild, wild west scratching their heads at what must have looked like a bush gone wild and yelling out, “Tumble weed!” Who knows.  The Russian variety is said to have come by boat with imported grain shipments.  The thistle tagged along and was thought by some to be a good source of feed for livestock.  And while that may not have been the best idea, tumbleweeds were given what they needed to make America their new home.

Where Can I Get One?

The thing about weeds is they are pretty much everywhere.  Tumbleweeds can be found in dry, arid parts of North America.  The easiest place to get them is along fences after a windy day.  If you don’t live near the desert– or North America for that matter– believe it or not there are tumbleweed farms.  Or you can Buy Tumbleweed Here.  Oh yes, we’ve gone so far as to grow weeds on purpose in North America!

What Can I Do With My Tumbleweed?

The tumbleweed, like the pet rock, is only limited to your imagination my friend.   Some have used them as southwestern decoration.  A old cart or wheel barrow full of them can look  rustic and whimsicle all at the same time.  While natural is still the most popular (and responsible choice) they can be spray painted gold or silver for added flair around the holidays.  Add them to your next wild, wild west theme party and win points for authenticity with your guests.  Large tumbleweeds are a fun substitute for Christmas trees with plenty of room for ornaments to go around.  Stacking three tumbleweeds sprayed white makes for a unique snowman.  Believe it or not, some have taken to playing with their tumbleweed by taking a leaf blower to it…but that really is pushing it.

Tumbleweeds are a great part of Americana.  They draw up thoughts of the frontier.  Tumbleweeds can inspire you to move forward into unknown territories.  They can make your next party a memorable one or add a little something different and special to your collection of American memorabilia.  Buy tumbleweeds now and discover something extraordinary on the frontiers of your life.