Monday, July 29, 2013

Celebration of a century!

Agave americana marginata - Century plant
location : Zone C, along the Eugenia trail

 Today calls for a celebration.  The Century plant that I planted 8 years ago have finally flowered.  The flowers are borne on a long solid pole or terminal shoot.  This plant flowers only once at the end of their lives which may be between 5-35 years.  I guess the plant would like to give a good Ramadhan surprise.  Because the plant takes such a long time to flower - long enough to seem like a century, it is thus named the 'Century 'plant. Yahooo, thrilled indeed I was!
The greenish yellow flowers face upwards, are lightly scented with two whorls and 6 petal-like tepals.

Location: Zone C, along Eugenia trail
The Agave americana marginata or Century plant terminal shoot is about 10 meters long and rises spectacularly from the centre of the rosette.

 The plant is 2 meters across and more than a human height i.e. about 7 feet high.  The form I have here is the variegated type with creamish white margins.  There are sharp spines along the margins .  The dense crown of sword-like leaves have a dramatic effect and is used in many landscape treatments like rockeries or rock gardens.  Once the flowering is over, the plant will form offsets or plantlets in the form of bubils alongside the flowers and I hope to collect the plantlets in the hundreds soon....

From a single long solid pole or flowering shoot, branched flower stems are produced bearing the hundreds of flowers and later the plantlets.

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