Century plant set to bloom in Perry

Century plant set to bloom in Perry

You may have noticed some unusual foliage in Perry these days.

One plant that sits just beyond the pavement at the Dollar General has what you might call a good bit of personality.

Terry Harris' says her customers are surprised by the beast.

"I've noticed a lot of people come out and park over there and take pictures of it," she said.

It's so striking Susan Kiser called us up to come and check it out.


"First time I saw it, I thought, 'What in the heck is that?'" she exclaimed.

With its prehistoric prickly leaves, it can cause some confusion, so Kiser consulted with her son.

"He knows everything," she bragged.

He was right on the money with this one.

The center of attention off Courtney Hodges Boulevard is a century plant.


Terry Harris recalled he had seen one before.  

"Across town at my girlfriend's mother's house," he said.  "Hers had cactus-like shoots on it that came out like an aloe plant and it started blooming."

This one has a celery-like stalk shooting out the middle, too.

"Some people are betting that it will grow taller than the Dollar General sign," Harris said with a smile.

From different angles, it appears it's already there.


We looked up century plants and the flower can tower up to 40 feet in the air.

But Susan's son did a better job of describing what's about to happen.

"He said they're really pretty. They cascade down kind of like a chandelier, and said they're yellow and there's a bunch of them that will come out and bloom, and then the plant dies, but it has babies," she said.

Those babies have already broken ground.

So in the near future look for a pop of color high in the sky.

And in another 20 or 30 years, we will wait for round two.

These plants are also called American aloe plants.


And the name is misleading. Century plants don't take 100 years to bloom.

But here is a warning if you dig up any of those baby plants -- the greenery has prickly spines.

You'll want to plant one in a sunny area with lots of space to grow and then leave it alone.

Some experts say it's downright dangerous to dig them up when they get mature.

 

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