Plant Talk

A Once-in-a-Lifetime Agave

Posted in Behind the Scenes on March 16, 2020, by Matt Newman

You can be sure that we’re still caring for our many plants and collections even while the Garden is temporarily closed—and there are always new stories to tell and resources to connect with. The wonders of nature play out even when no one’s watching!

The Agave titanota can take over ten years to flower, but the wait is worth it. This one in our Haupt Conservatory began sending up its nearly eight-foot inflorescence four months ago, and the colorful show lasted three weeks between January and February—which you can see in this timelapse video. Because this agave species is monocarpic, this wondrous display of life is also its last hurrah; it flowers but once in its lifetime and dies soon after.

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