'DO NOT plant them:' Officials in multiple states warn of mysterious seeds received in the mail from China

WASHINGTON -- Officials in multiple states are issuing warnings regarding unsolicited packages containing seeds that may have originated from China. 

Several Virginia residents claim to have received them. The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) said the seeds in the packages are unknown at this time and may be invasive plant seeds.

Officials said the packages were sent by mail and may have Chinese writing on them.

VDACS warns not to plant the seeds, as invasive species wreak havoc on the environment.

“Taking steps to prevent their introduction is the most effective method of reducing both the risk of invasive species infestations and the cost to control and mitigate those infestations,” the department said in a statement.

Anyone who has received a package containing seeds is asked to contact the Office of Plant Industry Services at 804-786-3515.

Meanwhile, officials with the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture Food and Forestry said Monday, July 27 "we received reports of Oklahomans receiving seeds in the mail from China they did not order," advising people not to plant or open them.

The Ohio Department of Agriculture said in a news release Monday the agency "has been notified that several Ohio residents have received unsolicited packages containing seeds that appear to have originated from China."

Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles tweeted a video message Monday indicating, "We have been notified notified that people have received unsolicited seed packets that appear to have originated from China," and that they could be harmful.