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IU's Blooming 'Century Plant' Topples After Wind And Rain

The broken stalk of the century plant following a storm.

(Zach Herndon/WTIU News)

The towering "century plant" at Indiana University's Jordan Hall Greenhouse got a bit smaller Monday after part of its stalk collapsed.

A post on the greenhouse's Facebook page cites rainy, windy weather as the possible cause of the collapse. The post says the greenhouse was not damaged by the incident and gardeners will leave the plant as it is, draped over the glass roof.

Part of the more than 30-foot-tall stalk still protrudes from the greenhouse roof.

The broken stalk of the century plant following a storm.
The stalk still protrudes from the greenhouse roof. Gardeners say they'll leave the plant as it is. (Zach Herndon/WTIU News)Caption

 

The Agave americana is known as the century plant, despite a usual lifespan of about 30 years. IU's plant is more than 50 years old. 

The greenhouse began sharing the plant's journey on social media in April as it began to grow the main flower stalk, which signaled the beginning of the end of its life. The plant started blooming a couple of weeks ago. 

While the stalk dies after the plant fully blooms, greenhouse staff hope to collect seeds for future plantings. 

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