Flowery exclamation point, a ‘Puya Raimondii’ punctuates an isolated granite height. Only after 150 years of growth does this world’s tallest herb, an Andean cousin of the pineapple, shoot skyward from a spiny base. It dwarfs in age even the largest of Mexico’s agaves, popularly called century plants. Atop a ladder, a man plucks one of the 8,000 blossoms on the 30-foot-high spire, which dies even as it blooms.
National Geographic - February, 1966
Puyas are the coolest. I’ve seen a Puya berteroniana in bloom before and it was marvelous.