It feels like ages since I’ve been here…..
….here on the blog, that is.
The weather has been rather extreme for hiking down here in the desert valley…I heard that four or five people died because of the heat a few weeks ago….not a good thing…oppressive, nasty, raunchy heat…..
So last weekend I headed north…waaaay north…twenty five miles west of Flagstaff…the high was only 85 degrees…spent six hours hiking a sweet loop-trail that skirted the northern parts of Sycamore Canyon. With about an hour of the hike remaining, I came across a section of the forest that had six or eight of these Century Plants…Agave americana…just kind of hanging-out, real bright and everything in the middle of the otherwise dark green forest….the blossoms on this particular plant were easily eight feet above the ground.
My little one and I encountered this bit of desert wonderfulness on Highway 89A, on a stretch of the road called “The Mingus Highway,” just south and west of Jerome, Arizona. The formal name of the plant is Agave americana, but it is commonly referred to as the Century plant. If you’d like to, you can check-out this link on Wikipedia for more information….and if you’re prefer not to visit the link, I’ll just tell you that, while it is referred to as the Century plant, it typically lives for 10-30 years and then dies after it blooms.
We saw probably half a dozen or more of the plants along the roadway, but this one was by far the freshest of the bunch…the others were either seriously late in their blooming season and had mostly wilted flowers or were already dying or dead.