People Are Getting Scammed into Buying Seeds of Non-Existent Cat-Face Flowers Generated by AI

Scammers are always finding new ways of taking advantage of gullible people, and apparently selling seeds of fake flowers generated by artificial intelligence is one of their latest techniques.

Artificial intelligence is touted as the next big thing in technological evolution, but right now it also seems to be a perfect tool for scammers looking to take advantage of people who can’t tell the difference between what’s real and what’s not. Forget the elaborate scams where AI is used to fake actual people’s faces and voices, or the perfect-looking digital avatars posing as virtual girlfriends for hire, these days people are using artificial intelligence to create fake flowers that look like cute cat faces and selling seeds to clueless plant lovers online. Seeds of non-existent plants with named like “Cats Eye Dazzle” are currently being sold on various legitimate-looking websites, as well as popular e-commerce platforms like eBay or Etsy.

On April 17, a Facebook user by the name of “StorieSpot” posted a bunch of photos of a flower called “cat’s eye dazzle” in the popular group National Geographic Wild Planet (no affiliation with National Geographic). The cute-looking flowers resembled cats’ faces with black eyes and a nose, and it didn’t matter that no one had even heard of such a flower before, people instantly fell in love with them. The post got over 80,000 likes and tens of thousands of shares on Facebook alone, and many users expressed interest in buying some seeds.

“Love to have these seeds,” a user commented, “I WANT SOME SEED,” another user demanded, and before long someone wrote, “You can buy seeds”. They weren’t lying either, well technically anyway, a quick search for ‘cat’s eye dazzle’ reveals several legit-looking sites selling seeds for the cute flowers for anywhere between $15 and $30 per pack. You can also find them on Etsy or eBay if you trust those platforms more, but your chances of getting real cat’s eye dazzle seeds are exactly the same, zero.

Rumor and myth debunking site Snopes recently covered the ‘cat’s eye dazzle’ craze and found several versions of cat-eyed flowers available online, but no evidence of their existence before 2024. some of them look so much like cats it’s hard to imagine anyone believing they are real flowers, but considering someone went through the trouble of setting up professional-looking online seed shops to sell them, someone must be buying those seeds.

“This AI garbage is all over social media (especially Facebook) and thousands of people eat it up thinking it’s real. I don’t know why it makes me angry, but it does,” one Reddit user recently wrote.

It’s hard to estimate how many people have fallen for the AI-generated cat’s eye dazzle flower and spent money on seeds, but there are some first-hand accounts of people who did pull the trigger on this questionable purchase. One Reddit user who claimed to have bought the seeds “in a drunken fit” recently received them in the mail, and while the bag does read “cat’s eye dazzle,” they now know that whatever plant they sprout, it won’t have a cat’s face flower. Interestingly, the pansy and petunia seeds they ordered with the cat’s eye dazzle proved to be the real deal.

Apparently, scammers have been using tools like Photoshop to dupe gullible people into buying seeds for non-existent flowers and fruits for years, and AI just helped them elevate their game to a new level.


“There are a ton of dishonest sellers selling generic wildflower seeds as fake plant seeds using AI-generated images and Photoshop. These are about as real as blue strawberries or rainbow orange seeds,” one Reddit user wrote.

We’ve featured some spectacular flowers on Oddity Central, like the translucent Skeleton Flower, or the hummingbird-shaped Crotalaria cunninghamii flower, but you don’t need to be an expert to tell that they are actual plants, unlike the above AI-generated images.