WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2017
century plant′, 
  • Plant Biologyany New World plant of the genus Agave, requiring many years to mature and blooming once before dying, esp. the widely cultivated species A. americana, having leaves in a basal rosette and a tall flower stalk.
    • 1755–65, American.


    Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

    century plant n
    1. an agave, Agave americana, native to tropical America but naturalized elsewhere, having very large spiny greyish leaves and greenish flowers on a tall fleshy stalk. It blooms only once in its life, after 10 to 30 years (formerly thought to flower after a century)
      Also called: American aloe



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