National Geographic : 1929 Jan
Photograph by Dr. Gilbert Grosvenor ODD, UNREAL, AS IF TRANSPLANTED FROM A LOST WORLD Nude of leaves and twigs, the sinister, giant saguaro cactus startles all who see it for the first time. No use is made of it in Arizona, though the Papagos eat its fruit; on the Mexican west coast, a similar cactus furnishes fuel for sugar mills. 1notograph courtesy U.S.Forest Service THE SO-CALLED CENTURY PLANT BLOOMS BUT ONCE, THEN DIES From the juice of someagave plants Mexicans distill apotent spirit known as "mescal." Fromthe leaves ofvarious species fiber forcordage is taken. The number of years before flowering isindefinite and isde termined in each case by soil, climate, and vigor oftheplant.