Sunday, August 25, 2013

Century Plant Triplets--7th Week Lookit the Tops!

April 15 (tax day!) was a beautiful blue-sky day, and the subjects' details crisper than on April 8. Amazingly, these century plants continued upward growth even while continuing to grow outward. And the bloom clusters grew bigger. The pixstrip shows the agave triplets pics for those two days. (Click for larger older/newer side-by-side image.)

Last week, although I talked about gauging heights, the image of a couple in front of their own century plant triplets piqued my interest more than just guestimating the stalks' heights. During the browsing, I landed on Ross Family Photographs, where the same picture had the accompanying text "Will and Mary Ross by century plant in their yard in Burnet, TX, about 1948; he was so proud when it bloomed -- and three bloom stalks is rare".

I noticed a link to Will and Mary's 50th anniversary, which occurred in 1952. I wrote the website owner, Doris Ross Johnston, to talk about the plant and the couple—that it is nice to have such an interesting plant and the couple for height reference, and info about the long marriage, particularly so long ago. Doris noted, "Grandma and Grandpa were rather unusual for that time to have a Golden wedding anniversary. I think it's more common now that people usually live longer."

I wanted revisit heights this week, with a slight bit of refinement. I used a copy of this week's picture to further refine use of the street sign's height (two feet) to indicate how tall the plants are. I started with the bottom edge of the first sign in line with the start of the street sign post. From there, I stacked multiple images. At the top of the plants, I pasted sign images horizontally, with some offset by half the heights (one foot).

Observations about the previous to newer week:
  • All three look about a foot taller than the previous week.
  • Lefty reaches halfway up the "hangman's noose", and is champeen at 24 feet. (I don't know what that wiry formation is or does.)
  • Peewee reached the upper wire (18 1/2 feet).
  • Righty's up to 22 feet.
My thoughts of the pic for that day:
Much clearer day for taking pix! A bit more blossomy development, more noticeable at the tops. Peewee in the middle's doing pretty good also!
Index to my agave posts, from the time I first spotted the set of triplets in early March to mid-June, about 3 1/2 months.
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Century Plant Triplets--6th Week Subtle Continued Growth, Gauging Heights

The pixstrip shows the agave triplets pics from April 2 and April 8. At first glance, they don't seem to have changed much. (Click for larger older/newer side-by-side image.) The shot-put-ball-like blooms seem to show the biggest difference.

Gauging heights seeped into this article from curiosity over another set of century plant triplets.

During a Google search for "century plant bloom", I spotted the image, which also included a man and woman, good for providing relative height comparison. I estimated the century plants' height to be about 15 feet, based on approximately three times the height of the couple.

In my Century Plant Triplets--3rd Week Higher Up article, I'd mentioned using the nearby bike route street sign for a dimensional gauge. For my set of triplets, Righty's height looks to be about 20 feet here. (Click to see my image with 10 signs stacked near Righty.)

FWIW, a few weeks ago, when I went to measure the physical sign height to verify that sign's dimensions, I recalled I had to stretch my arm upward to reach the bottom of the sign. My height and arm totals seven feet, give or take an inch.

While I was playing with this pixstrip composition, I noticed that the distance between the two upper wires happened to be about the height of the street sign. Observations about the previous to newer week:
  • Lefty looks to have peaked in vertical growth.
  • Peewee grew about another half a foot.
  • Righty grew about another foot.
  • All three plants' bloom clusters at the end of their "arms" look a bit more robust.
  • Peewee and Righty look to be fistbumping at one spot.
My thoughts of the pic for that day:
Barely sprinkly weather. Very similar to the pic from April 2, but branches spread out a little wider, bloomer clusters a bit bigger.
It's apparent that my thoughts on April 8 were nowhere in the neighborhood of heights like my thoughts today. Running across the century plant triplets that I found online nudged me to infer measurements and methodologies for the two sets of century plant triplets and distance between two wires.

Index to my agave posts, from the time I first spotted the set of triplets in early March to mid-June, about 3 1/2 months.
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Century Plant Triplets--5th Week Closer Looks at Stalks and Branches

The pixstrip shows the agave triplets pics from March 25 and April 2. (Click for larger older/newer side-by-side image.) What a difference in sky contrast! Furthermore, the zoomed-in blue-sky one (more recent, left side) looks to be crisper than the zoomed-in overcast one (older, right side). (I just pulled up my original, unmodified snapshots and verified.) As an amateur photographer with no professional training whatsoever, the contrast differences surprised me.

For this pixstrip composition, I decided to zoom in more to the plants' stalks and branches. Observations about the previous to newer week:
  • Lefty doesn't look much taller.
  • Peewee reached past the middle wire.
  • Righty extended past the top wire.
  • Peewee and righty grew nearly another two feet.
  • All three plants make me visualize aliens having multiple outstretched arms, holding up "blossom" clumps that resemble shot put balls.
I would have taken pix April 1 as my weekly schedule for Mondays, but I'd overlooked charging my camera batteries and didn't have enough juice to shoot. So I returned Tuesday. For the rest of my series of the weekly century plant pix, I shot only on Mondays.

My thoughts of the pic for that day:
Maybe not as pretty as it could have been because of cloudiness.
Index to my agave posts, from the time I first spotted the set of triplets in early March to mid-June, about 3 1/2 months.
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Century Plant Triplets--4th Week Higher and Branching Out

The pixstrip shows the agave triplets pic from March 18 and March 25. The newer pic shows the stalks starting to grow branches. Instead of resembling giant, continuous asparagus spears, the upper parts parts of the stalks now look like crosses between Christmas trees and candelabras.

These stalks grew up some more, about half the sign's height for the first plant and another full sign's height for the 2nd and 3rd plant. BTW, during the week, I took a metal tape measure and measured the sign's height and width. Yep, 24 inches each direction. So, another week of the plants growing another two feet—well, ok, the two plants to the right.

My thoughts of the plants for that day:
All three stalks gained just a little more height. The middle one did not reach the wires. All three started sprouting branches.
Index to my agave posts, from the time I first spotted the set of triplets in early March to mid-June, about 3 1/2 months.
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16
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