Sunday, September 1, 2013

Century Plant Triplets--8th Week Lopsided Peewee

Happy Labor Day weekend, statesiders! In the April 22 image, the triplets are very robust. They all grew a little taller, and gained a smidge more bulk at the branches and bloom clusters. However, Peewee is looking unbalanced, maybe a bad sort of top-heavy. I initially thought that "leaning" would be a reasonable adjective for Peewee, but "lopsided" seems even better. The pixstrip shows the agave triplets pics for those April 15 and April 22. (Click for larger older/newer side-by-side image.)

From TheFreeDictionary, a definition for "lopsided" that fits well is "leaning or inclined to one side". OTOH, "leaning" could be an appropriate adjective also.
departing or being caused to depart from the true vertical or horizontal; "the leaning tower of Pisa"; "the headstones were tilted"
Come to think of it, Peewee's angle is similar to that of the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Recently, a friend wondered about weight for a stalk and blooms. I was not able to find much information. Wikipedia had a general mention:
Each agave plant will produce several pounds of edible flowers during its final season. The stalks, which are ready during the summer, before the blossom, weigh several pounds each.
A few weeks ago, I emailed a plant-knowledgeable neighbor and asked if he might know the weight of a stalk and bloom clusters. He didn't know, but gave a guess that the stalk would have lots of water in it and that each flower cluster would be a few pounds. He suggested using geometry for calculating the volume of the stalk, then multiplying the volume by the the weight of water for the same volume.

Yesterday, at the Austin Cactus & Succulent Society 2013 Fall Show & Sale (Zilker Botanical Garden), someone helping out a vendor friend thought a stalk and bloom clusters could weigh a few hundred pounds until the plant dried out. Next week, I'll have more info about and by the knowledgeable someone for article #9 about multiple-stalk century plants.

Note: The sale continues today. In case you miss the sale, the webpage lists the expected vendors and contact info.

My thoughts of the pic for that day:
Even bluer day for taking pix! Blossoms more noticeably robust, especially at the tops. But, uh-oh, Peewee in the middle is leaning rightward. If property caretakers fret over possible fallover, they might cut the entire stalk before the agave finishes its natural course.

Just about a year ago, a century plant at the same location started blooming, reaching skyward, about the same stage these plants are now. Suddenly, it was gone. I'll see how the plants progress next week, keeping my fingers crossed for their existence.
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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