Century Plant in Fremont

The Oakland Tribune wrote a whole article about someone’s Agave getting ready to bloom and didn’t include any photos. Although really, they get some of the facts wrong and they didn’t call us, the local experts, and most mystifying of all is why would they print this at all? I mean, it’s not like there aren’t hundreds of Agave blooms every summer throughout the Oakland and Berkeley hills, shooting up 40 feet tall. Just look up in the hills in mid summer and you can’t miss them.

FREMONT — At first glance, it appears that Susie and Jim Richardson have grown the world’s largest asparagus.

But the 25-foot-tall stalk that sprang up on their Niles district property last month is actually a type of cactus that goes out with a very big bang.

Commonly known as the century plant, the agave americana lives a modest existence for decades as a relatively small succulent until its final months, when it shoots up a mighty stalk that blooms like a tree in spring. Then it dies.

Errors? It’s not a cactus. Genus is always capitalized. And Agave americana is a relatively small succulent???? Hah! They get 12 feet across! They should have called us. I give good quotes over the phone to reporters.

  Cactus and Succulents
  Carnivorous Plants

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September 2023

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