This Spring we have lived for 12 years at the WD. The landscape is maturing. What used to be a bare, razed plot of dirt is now an attempt at bringing the desert back and I am happy with the result. Trees are getting big, bushes provide lots of protection for small animals and birds, and plants bloom happily without a lot of fussing on my part.
I planted primarily native plants in the yard because I wanted to blend into the landscape and also because I did not feel like fighting Mom every step of the way. I love gardening, but weeding is not a passion and neither is being a slave to the watering hose.
So there are some cacti and agaves in the yard, but it is not a plot of just gravel and prickly plants. Cacti now bloom in Spring and some of the agaves do too.
Thing is, when an agave blooms it dies. People call them "century plants" thinking that they live that long but in truth it is only about 10 years. So now every year we have an agave or two that send up their magnificent blooming stalk and then die because they use all living energy to send up that stalk. One consolation is that they have usually set off a "pup" (offspring) from the roots, so the plant does live on in a way.
One of this year's bloomers is by the horse barn, next to late Buggs' stall and under the Arizona walnut. Growth of the stalk is measured in inches a day and judging by the size of it, the bloom will be magnificent. Stay tuned.