The staff and visitors at the Cambridge University Botanic Garden in the UK are excited. An agave plant that they’ve had since 1962 is FINALLY flowering. They cannot tell which type of agave it is until it flowers, so the mystery will finally be solved. Once it flowers, that will be it! It will not flower again so this is pretty exciting!
The agave plant is best known as the plant from which you can make tequila. That particular agave is Agave tequilana, also known as blue agave. But, there are about 270 species of agave.
The flower stem for this particular yet-unknown species of agave in their ‘arid garden’ shot up over the weekend of June 22/23, 2019.
People have noticed that this plant’s flower stem looks like a giant asparagus!
We’re keeping an eye on the flower stem of #Agave heteracantha @CUBotanicGarden. It’s shot up over the weekend, & promises more rapid growth & flower. Will we need to take panes out of the glasshouse roof to let it flower? Watch this space! pic.twitter.com/ViI0fQb9TC
— Sally Petitt (@Sally_Petitt) June 24, 2019
The flower stem is growing at an amazing rate. On July 8th, it was over 3.3metres tall.
— Cam Botanic Garden (@CUBotanicGarden) July 8, 2019
The staff at the gardens are anticipating that they may have to take part of the roof off in the greenhouse to accommodate the flower spike.
— Fiona Reynolds (@fionacreynolds) July 5, 2019
Look out for our Head of Horticulture @Sally_Petitt on @itvanglia this evening after 6pm talking about our ‘asparagus on steroids’ agave that is growing a huge flower spike at a rate of 10cm a day. https://t.co/ixYwqsA7PM pic.twitter.com/LndPf9J232
— Cam Botanic Garden (@CUBotanicGarden) July 9, 2019
How will we verify what species of #Agave we have once it (finally!) flowers? Tune into @BBCCambs 10am THIS SUNDAY to hear from @CUBG_curators how this will be done & to get the latest update on our giant agave flower spike! pic.twitter.com/t1l3UaIAsX
— Cam Botanic Garden (@CUBotanicGarden) August 24, 2019
Our Agave is flowering! After keeping us waiting all summer, the 4.5m inflorescence is now sporting some unusual yellow flowers. Read more on our website:https://t.co/L0VFs5c3Zr pic.twitter.com/7RndmNF6DA
— Cam Botanic Garden (@CUBotanicGarden) September 10, 2019
Read the reveal of which kind of agave this is!