Doctors issue warning after students consume plant seeds in attempt to get high

Doctors issue warning after students consume plant seeds in attempt to get high

SEEKONK, Mass. — Doctors across the country are warning about a new way children are attempting to get high involving plant seeds.

The warning comes after students in Seekonk, Massachusetts, were hospitalized when they ingested plant seeds, such as Sleepy Grass, Hawaiian Baby Woodrose and Blue Morning Glory, in an attempt to get high.

“I've been doing this for over 40 years, and I've never heard of any seeds being ingested to get a kid high,” Jeff Seyboth, the owner of J&L Landscaping and Garden Center, said.

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Seekonk parents were notified about the situation after authorities learned of an incident involving a teen from nearby Somerset, who became sick after ingesting seeds. The Seekonk Police Department soon learned children in their community also had ingested the seeds.

"It's just something you have to watch. If your child's not into gardening flowers, and you see any kind of flower seeds, it should be a tip off that you might want to look into that,” Seekonk Police Department Capt. Frank John said.

The superintendent of the Seekonk Public Schools said in a statement to parents that when the seeds are ingested, they can cause auditory and visual hallucinations, spatial and temporal distortion, introspection and side effects, such as nausea and vomiting.

"Honestly, I think people find new ways to get high and do stupid stuff like this all the time,” one student said.

A number of garden centers have pulled the seeds from their shelves, including J&L Landscaping and Garden Center.

Seyboth said he’s only familiar with the seeds for the Blue Morning Glory.

“The other two plants they mentioned I'm not familiar with whatsoever. I'm not sure where they got those. (They) possibly could have got them online. I don't know,” he said.

Channel 11 News reached out to the Allegheny County Health Department Thursday about the issue. A representative said they haven’t seen any similar cases in the Pittsburgh area.