In nature, there are patterns within patterns. As the agave plant opens, the spines from the old leave imprints on the new. The plant also shows growth bands and then we add in the intense sunlight and we can see it all displayed at one time. An agave is a succulent but not a cactus. By the way, if you are ever so unfortunate as to get stuck with one of the end spines, you will remember the experience for a very long time.