Friday, October 14, 2016

An icon in decline...

Here in Portland huge Agaves are enough of a rarity, that when they do exist, they become local icons. People refer to them by "name" the "Fremont Agave" (dearly departed after blooming), the "Alameda Ridge Agave" and this one, the "Sacramento Street Agave"...

I'd last done a drive by in 2014 (photos shared on the plant lust blog) and everything looked grand. Yet on this most recent visit, in late September, things looked concerning. In fact I searched for proof of a bloom-spike, thinking that would explain the said state of the plant...declining after bloom.

But there was no sign, this deterioration couldn't be blamed on flowering.

A once glorious example of Agave-ness seems to be slipping away.

Although this smaller plant, lower on the slope, looks to be just fine.

Pink is not a normal color to see on healthy Agave arms.

And of course dried up, desiccated, limbs are no good.

This was nearby. Too little too late? (our summers are very dry, and for this agave to have survived multiple winters you know the drainage has to be excellent...did it just get too hot and dry?)

Here's hoping things can still take a turn for the better.

All material © 2009-2016 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

16 comments:

  1. The pink would suggest water issues wouldn't it, maybe root problems on top of a dry summer? I hope it does pull through.

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    1. Me too, it would be a shame to lose it before it blooms.

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  2. I wonder if the owners noticed things getting too dry and then panicked and over-watered in compensation.

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    1. Judging by the surrounding garden I'm guessing there may have been a change in ownership, and a scenario like you mentioned probably played out.

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  3. Wow. That's sadder than just losing it to a bloom cycle. Hope it pulls through.

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    1. Indeed, I wanna see that bloom someday!

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  4. Poor agave. Hope it's able to recover.

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    1. Certainly is getting water this weekend.

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  5. So sad. Some of my agaves have gotten sunburn but that usually shows up as red color rather than pink (although some of my aloes turn pink from a combination of excessive sun and too little water).

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    1. I've seen a similar color on Agaves in Arizona, ones that are sorely in need of water.

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  6. Oh no, someone needs to pull out that Ailanthus trying to establish right next to the lower agave.

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    1. Damn, I was so focused on the Agaves I didn't even notice it. But there it is...

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  7. If it was farther south I would say Agave Weevil damage... any sign of Gophers?

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    1. Not that I could see but I was just down at sidewalk level.

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  8. Big plants with substance and character impacts the feel of a whole area. Always sad when they fade away.

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    1. And this one definitely had substance and character.

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