5” x 5” (Framed 9 3/4” x 9 3/4”) Embroidery Painting / Mixed Media, 2021
This piece is part of my Marfa Roadtrip Series
The century plant, a species of Agave, contrary to its name, only lives about 20 -30 years. It has a spread around 6–10 ft with gray-green leaves of 3–5 ft long, each with a prickly margin and a heavy spike at the tip that can pierce deeply.
It is assumed that the name given to this plant is because of its amazing long lifespan. However, this plant is an exception because it can only live from 10 to 30 years. As in why is this name given to the plant, this can be explained by its blossoming phase. In its entire lifespan, it only blossoms once. Compared to other flowering plants, this plant really seems like it takes a century to blossoms and this is why it is called century plant.
Near the end of its lifespan, the century plant sprouts a large stalk that can reach 30 feet high and unveils yellow flowers. Most parts of the plant are useful; the tough leaf fibers can be woven into mats or ropes, and the moisture-laden contents are used to create various alcohols.
The century plant is the longest inflorescence in the world. After blooming, the plant dies. The famous tequila liquor is brewed from this plant."