Giant Agave has a bloom spike!

Lee's Summit, MO(Zone 6a)

Check this out - it's amazing!!! It's growing in my neighbor's front yard.

Thumbnail by KayJones
Lee's Summit, MO(Zone 6a)

Another picture of the spike on my neighbor's giant Agave.

Thumbnail by KayJones
Tucson, AZ

LOL, looks like a big Asparagus doen't it?

Dave

Southern Dutchess Co, NY(Zone 5b)

Wow! I hope we get to see lots of pictures.

Lee's Summit, MO(Zone 6a)

Yes, as the bloom stalk progresses, I will take pictures and post them.

Mesilla Park, NM

Wow, those are so majestic.. I've never had one long enough to bloom.. good photos.

Austin, TX

Looks like an A.americana.

Decatur, GA

Is that you or the neighbor?

Lee's Summit, MO(Zone 6a)

The person in the picture is my neighbor, Trent.

Saugerties, NY(Zone 5a)

I cant wait to see that baby bloom, she's going to be a knock out
Christine

Lee's Summit, MO(Zone 6a)

I am also looking forward to the bloom - I've never seen one - the whole neighborhood is excited. Trent said it should bloom in Sept.

Goodyear, AZ(Zone 9a)

Doesn't it die after it blooms?

Lee's Summit, MO(Zone 6a)

Trent says it will die, but I have heard others say it doesn't, so I don't know.

Lee's Summit, MO(Zone 6a)

From this website:

http://www.huliq.com/45780/agave-gentryi-agave-about-produce-giant-bloom

The Bloom is coming: We are excited to see the bloom for several reasons. First, our plant has never bloomed before and we can find no good description of the bloom elsewhere. This is not surprising since agaves commonly require 25-60 years before they bloom. Our 15 year old may be blooming prematurely. Thus, we are especially excited to witness the event.


We are expecting a large yellow show of enormous proportions. The first hint of a bloom was the appearance of an ‘asparagus-like’ shoot in early September. It has been steadily increasing, still resembling a giant asparagus stalk, ever since and is now over 18 ft tall.


Remember that most agaves are monocarpic which means that they die after blooming, so you will not want to miss this one. Fortunately, the plant has several small offsets so we may have the opportunity to witness it again in this century, but why wait!

Source: By Fantastic Ferns

(Zone 8a)

Absolutely amazing! Do keep us posted - I'll be watching this thread with interest :)

Craryville, NY

Incredible! Can't wait to see the progression! Trent looks like a proud Daddy!

london, United Kingdom

A once in a lifetime event.Its a shame it will die after flowering but at least he/she ( a name?) go's out in style.

Craryville, NY

Any updated photos? Any new action???

Lee's Summit, MO(Zone 6a)

No real change - just the stalk is a bit taller. When there is a significant change, I will post a picture.

Craryville, NY

A bit taller? Sounds like its going to take over the world!!!!

Mesilla Park, NM

Kay, be around to catch all the babies that will be falling... then .... mail them to me..lol

I'll bet that is going to be gorgeous when it blooms..

A.

Lee's Summit, MO(Zone 6a)

My neighbor doesn't allow the babies to grow - he digs them and pitches them. Antoinette, if you need some pups, let me know.

Mesilla Park, NM

oh don't tell me that ... he throws them... I think my heart just skipped a beat..!! I think also, that some may form at the top of the flower and then it bursts out somehow.. that is how the plant makes sure it survives (the owner) lol.. Also, he needs to save one at least because after this baby blooms, it will die.. If he will give you a pup, I'll take it..

OH where are you PalmBob, I'm sure can give the correct information regarding what I just tried to say.

Lee's Summit, MO(Zone 6a)

I think there is one giant Agave that DOES produce pups on the blooms, and I don't know if that's what Travis has or not - if so, I will ask him for some of the pups.

Austin, TX

A.american is pretty variable in how long it takes to bloom---but 15 years is fairly common. There are few agaves that take more than 40 years to bloom. A.victoria-reginae can take a long time---I know of one that has been in the ground for 31 years. A.bracteata is another very long lived agave. If the blooms are not pollinated it may produce "bulbils"--plantlets that form at the site of the blossoms. Bulbils are clones of the parent plant and may be planted---when they get to be about 3" tall. They generally root easily. The problem is that you need to leave them on the parent plant till they get a little size---and some people don't like to leave a big decaying agave in their garden for very long. You can try planting them when they're smaller, sometimes they make it.

This message was edited Apr 29, 2009 11:59 PM

Acton, CA(Zone 8b)

I think that is an Agave americana, though it's pretty huge for even one of those... must be the east coast phenomenon... things in that constant heat and humidity tend to outgrow stuff in drier, cooler climates (or they rot in the east and never grow at all). IF that indeed is Agave americana it will die soon after flowering... as for saving the pups, I personally would never grow this species as pups are a nightmare- usually hundreds of them and all over the place and very hard to dig up (without digging up everything in between the parent and the babies)... not to mention they are sharp and unfriendly plants. I was tossing these out by the trash-can-full the last place I lived, and I still never got control of the situation.

I have never seen an Agave americana make bulbils on the old flower stalks... usually this species is so aggressive a suckerer, there probably is no reason for it to also make bulbils.

Here is an Agave americana variegated with a spike of its own (nice color)... a pretty large individual but not nearly as massive as the one in your photo.

Thumbnail by palmbob
Acton, CA(Zone 8b)

Here's another species I saw a few weeks ago flowering (much shorter flower than that one you photographed will be)... but gives you an idea what a flower might look like. This is Agave avellanidens

Thumbnail by palmbob
Acton, CA(Zone 8b)

Here's another flower I also saw last week, (no idea what species)... a squirrel is eating the flowers

Thumbnail by palmbob
Austin, TX

Some A.americana clones get very big. And in FL the plants would likely have been well watered over the years. Here in Austin americanas, in the summer if they are happily situated, will take lots of water with no problems. Bubil production, in agaves that produce them, is related to flower pollination---bulbils are produced when there is no pollination of the flowers. A.americana is an interesting "aggregated" species containing enormous variation---all over the world.

Lee's Summit, MO(Zone 6a)

The one my neighbor has is like the second picture. I know nothing about this plant, except to say it had babies all around it (in my yard - I mow them down). Trent keeps the babies dug from around his plant, because he has two toddlers.

Mesilla Park, NM

When I first started with cactus, a friend told me that the Agave produced some plantlets at the top of the flower stalk and then they were thrown out and that she had to pick them up off the street where they fell... didn't sound right to me either, but I was new to gardening, I wonder now if she mean't seed pods that burst, although I haven't seen those either. It's good to know that doesn't happen, otherwise you would see me looking for them around here if I ever get to see one bloom..

Thanks palmbob.

Acton, CA(Zone 8b)

But it does happen... just not in most Agaves... I think there are 12-16 species that do this, I just don't think Agave americana is one of them

Here is an old flower stalk of Agave vilmoreana showing several large bulbils (look like miniature agaves... which is what they are)... there were well over 1000 I am sure on this single flower stalk

Thumbnail by palmbob
Acton, CA(Zone 8b)

here's an Agave macroacantha bulbil ready to plant, still on its flower stalk

Thumbnail by palmbob
Acton, CA(Zone 8b)

I found the photo of the Agave vilmoreana with a gazillion bulbils on it..

Thumbnail by palmbob
Mesilla Park, NM

Oh my god...

I just got four Agave Americana x Scabra from Lowes yesterday, they had the gallon pots on clearance for 5.00 and I compared them to the Agave Americana I brought as pups from CA and mine are blue, these I just got are green.. the pups I brought were tiny and now they are in gallon size pots.. It makes me think twice about planting them, but I really like them. I have not researched Scabra but think that it is a short Agave, not sure. So I'll go checking it out before I plant all of these.

When I asked for pups on freecycle the first year here, the response I got was amazing... there were people with Agaves that you would need a tractor to get those out, I couldn't even think about digging one of those up. What happened is that these were planted too close to there house and were against the wall of the homes, they needed them to be removed. I don't know what ever happened to those Agaves at those home, but they would have made great speciman plants somewhere.

Mesilla Park, NM

Palmbob, do you know by chance if Agave Americana Medio Picta would get really big if I put that in the ground? I wonder how big is the biggest they get? I've got 5 pots of that and they are about 3 feet tall in the pots, I'd really like to see one of those in the ground, I'll bet they look great.. so far they have survived here in the pots, the first year they got scars from the hail we got, but you wouldn't know it now, they look great. Some pup alot in the pots, and two of them don't pup at all, I don't know why, two are against the wall on the opposite sides so two get more sun than the other two. The ones with more sun don't pup.

A.

Keaau, HI

Agave americana sets seed in the right environment, but does not make bulbils.

The numerous cultivars are propagated by removal of the offsets.

Agave americana 'Medio-picta' is a dwarf and will stay small if placed in the ground.

Thumbnail by Metrosideros
Craryville, NY

Ok, after reading all this new info, I was right: The Agave that ate Cincinnati! First, Florida, then....the world....

St Joseph, IL(Zone 5b)

I have a picture in my head now morrigan....thanks. Hope I can sleep tonight. Ha :)
Laura

(dana)Owensboro, KY(Zone 6a)

has this bloomed . did you get any pics

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