by germinatrix | April 17th, 2009
I never expected this. Not yet.
I knew it would happen, someday – I mean, I have 15+ different varieties of Agaves in my garden, but I wasn’t thinking any one of them would bloom just yet. I mean, at 12 years old, my garden is fairly young, by garden standards. And I didn’t become an Agave/ Aloe/ Succulent fanatic until about 8 years ago. While I adore all of my agaves, I have a special place in my heart for the A. vilmorinianas – the Octopus Agaves. There is something about those wavy, undulating ‘arms’ that I find elegant and also a little comical (I love that combo). I have about 6 of them, 4 in pots.
And one of them is giving up the ghost.
Every agave lover imagines the blooms of their special plants with a mixture of anticipation and sadness … Agaves, being monocots, only bloom once, and then they die. But what a DEATH! If you gotta go, why not go big?
It is really hard to get a good image of this very rigid, very tall, straight and narrow bloomspike. It won’t branch like an Agave americana, the Century Plant’s spike will – it is just going to keep stretching out until it … I don’t even know what! Explodes? The books say I can expect a 15-20 ft stalk. Wow … I think I have 11 ft now, and it is really tall! I can’t get it all on one picture!
I’m excited to see what the blossoms look like – I hope they satisfy my hummingbirds the way the aloes did. All the aloes are spent now, even (sniff sniff) Willard, so my Octopus Spike has big shoes to fill.
So the pot behind my daybed will soon be empty. Should I replace it with another A. vilmoriniana, or maybe switch it up? Hhhhmmmmmmm… well, whatever I chose – it’ll probably be spiky!