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Century Plant saga continues in Bonita Springs

A Bonita Springs resident says his century plant is likely 40 feet tall.
Century plant in Bonita Springs
Posted at 9:29 PM, May 24, 2024

BONITA SPRINGS, Fla. — Century plant stories continue to be told at FOX 4. It's in Bonita Springs this time around, in Southwest Florida.

"Before it started shooting straight up, it went that way, and I said, 'Uh oh, what's that all about?' Then, next thing you know it was growing six inches a day straight up," said Bonita Springs resident John Parks.

Parks is talking about his beloved century plant.

"It started in March," he told FOX 4's Victoria Scott. "So, in two months, it went from the top of that, to up there. We sit there in the Adirondack chairs and just watch it grow."

It's a similar situation to what Scott reported two weeks ago on the century plant in North Port.

Remember Joanne Lucibello? Her century plant in North Port was huge and getting a lot of attention on social media.

Century plants are also known as "Agave Americana." According to the University of Florida Ag-Extension, they can reach heights of 30 feet or more. The plant is also native to the U.S.— usually Texas— and Mexico. They bloom once in 30 years. It felt like "a century" to people in the old days.

"All of a sudden, there was a big growth on it, and then I started keeping track of it," Lucibello told Scott.

Parks's neighbor saw Joanne's story here on FOX 4.

"My neighbor right over here, he came running across the lawn," Parks said. "We were out here, and he said that he saw one just like that on the news."

Parks has more than one century plant under his supervision.

He has two others, in addition to several pups, or young plants.

"We're going to keep one or two of the pups that are coming up there," he said.

It's a waiting game until the estimated 40-foot-tall one topples over and passes away.

Parks said he has some ideas in mind when the occasion happens.

"Tequila," he said jokingly. "No, we should have a celebration and have some neighbors over."