Monday, March 29, 2010

Century Plant - Agave americana

This Century Plant grows in a garden on my street. It is the only one I have seen in Houston, but Houston is a very big city and there are undoubtedly others. These plants are common in more desert climates, such as Arizona; however, they are now found in Europe, Australia, South Africa and India. These agaves were a very important part of Pre-Columbian culture in Mexico, having been harvested for their sap to make a fermented drink called pulque and for their leaves to make a kind of twine for rope and leatherwork. The average life span is ten years, dying after it blooms. Unfortunately, Palo Verde beetles can hasten its early demise by eating its roots.

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