Gantt resident’s century cactus blooms

Published 12:01 am Thursday, July 2, 2015

Friends of Gantt resident Maxine Williamson kept calling to see if her century cactus is blooming.

Maxine Williamson stands next to her century plant Wednesday afternoon. | Andrew Garner/Star-News

Standing some 30-feet, the cactus plant has a tall green stalk with spiny leaves at its base. The plant produces baby cactuses.

The century cactus, or Agave Americana, was planted in Williamson’s front yard of her Sandy Landing Road home. She has two on her piece of the property.

Williamson said she and her husband, Evon, were given the plant 20 years ago by Sarah and Tommy Glisson.

“It was a little old baby plant when we got it,” Williamson said.

It is said that the century cactus blooms every 100 years. In fact, the plant blooms every 10-30 years.

Williamson said the plant grew to its current height the last two months, adding that it will die down and grow again.

Williamson planted the cactus near the front of her house.

With it being so hot and dry, the cactus doesn’t need much as far as water and fertilizer.

“This is so unusual,” Williamson said about the cactus’s blooming.

Williamson said the Glissons gave her the plant because they had one growing and she fell in love with it.

“I fell in love with it the first time I saw it,” she said. “One day, I found a bucket with a baby cactus in it.”

Williamson said she’s thankful that it’s blooming because she really wanted to share it with those who don’t pass by her home often.