Looking like freakishly gigantic insect legs, these bristling-with-bulbils agave stalks can be found at Olvera Street’s Placita de Dolores fountain area. Bulbils (as expertly explained in this post) are one way agaves propogate themselves, and these examples certainly caught my eye as I walked past them on my way to the office. Interestingly, the gardening staff at La Placita have cut away all the dead mother plant’s leaves leaving nothing but the stalk protruding from the ground … that, combined with the weight of what looks like hundreds of tiny agave clones, contributes to the bent, insectoid, look of the stalks. Weirdly beautiful, I’m in love with this amazing display of agave reproduction.
I felt like I was being studied in return while taking this close-up shot … and not just studied, but looked down on since this clump dangled heavily at least a full foot over my head! Also looking down on my photo interaction was the Placita’s security guards, who seemed very interested in what I was doing standing inside the raised planter areas … Time to cross the street to Union Station for the train ride home …
Want more plant weirdness? Check out this post at Dustin Gimbel’s non-secateur blog, where the bizarre flower of a Brazilian vine called Aristolochia gigantea answers the question: Can a flower that looks like a pair of deflated lungs, a liver, and a Martian’s ladyparts, be beautiful?