FROM OXYGEN, TO BEING PROCESSED INTO A WIDE VARIETY OF BY-PRODUCTS, THE PLANT HAS GREAT PROPERTIES
Juan Guevara Moreno, deputy president of the Sustainable Agricultural and Rural Development Commission in the local Congress, will seek to promote the production of maguey in Querétaro.
The official announced that he will introduce a reform initiative with which he seeks to strengthen all those producers who have this plant as their base product.
The PRI indicated that the legislative work will be aimed at protecting the activity and spreading the work they do to tourists.
In addition, it will seek to exploit all those benefits that are obtained from the maguey.
“Oxygen generates three times more than a tree and it is a plant that does not require water for its production, so there are areas in the Sierra, in the semi-desert, where this project could be.”
Currently, the state imports the plant from Tlaxcala and Hidalgo, since Querétaro is not a producing territory.
“What is sought is this, a plant that comes to generate an economic benefit for families,” he said.
It is estimated that there are approximately 300 hectares in Querétaro dedicated to the production of maguey.
In the state, there are three areas where maguey is cultivated, which would be sought to be promoted for tourism.
Agave or maguey?
What is the correct way to use these words?
… “The plant with which pulque is produced was called metl by the indigenous people, for the Spanish they would call it maguey, given its similarity to others they had seen in the Caribbean lands.” (Granadas;1993)
At this moment you will surely say that the two words, agave and maguey are synonymous and in a certain way you are right, but there is a correct way to use it.
The word maguey, as it says in the quotation at the beginning, was assigned by the Spaniards since when they arrived in the Antilles in the 16th century, they discovered a plant that the natives called: maguey (sabila and aloe plants) and they extended the Name all the others in a similar way that they found on their way through America.
That is why it is still common in several populations to call the rosette-shaped plants similar to aloe throughout Mexico magueyitos.
Of course , the maguey , “the tree of wonders” as Father José de Acosta (1540-1600) named it in his Natural and Moral History of the Indies, has names in native languages such as: Doba or toba in Zapotec, melt in Nahuatl, akamba in Purépecha, al-mal in Chontal, cachro in Popolaca, cuu’u in Mayo, ki in Maya, guarú in Mazahua, yavi in Mixtec, yiva in Cuicatec, etc., and we can continue with the names that give our native peoples.
The word Agave is the scientific name of the maguey.
The Agave genus was scientifically disclosed in 1753 by the Swedish naturalist Carlos Linnaeus, who took it from the Greek Agaves. In Greek mythology, Agave was a maenad, that is, a worshiper of Bacchus, the god of Wine, daughter of Cadmus, king of Thebes who, leading a crowd of bacchantes, murdered his son Pentheus, Cadmus’s successor on the throne. , who had dared to observe a ceremony made for Bacchus, where only maenads were allowed access. Regardless of the fact that she was his son, she complied with the punishment that was meted out to meddlers and her act was seen as an admirable deed.
The word agave comes from the Greek word Agavé meaning something admirable, noble, illustrious, brilliant. Apparently, like Father Acosta, Linneo thought it was an admirable plant for its multiple uses among Mexicans.
Until now, 210 species of agaves have been registered in the world and more are still being discovered, due in many cases to hybridization. In the words of Dr. Felipe Palma, a biologist specializing in the distribution of agaves in Oaxaca and a teacher in courses organized by Mezcología, he comments that at this point, up to 280 species could be reached, all that remains is to confirm them among the different Botanist Colleges.
THE SCIENTIFIC NAMES.
The name of a species of agave is formed by the genus, which begins with a capital letter, and a specific epithet, in lower case, both in italics because they are in Latin.
When there are subspecies or varieties within the species, it is indicated “subsp.” Or “var.” and the name of that category in Latin.
If greater precision is required, the author who described and named the species, subspecies or variety and the year of the description are included. The author is described in full, since it is not part of the scientific name and is commonly abbreviated. Other authors in parentheses are those who had named the species before a change in its taxonomic status, for example when a species is considered a subspecies. (1)
Agave americana L. var. Oaxacan Gentry 1982
L. Author species (Linaeus)
Gentry Author Variety
AGAVE OR MAGUEY
The correct thing, then, when naming the scientific names, should be with the word Agave, so when referring to an angustifolia we should name it as Agave angustifolia and not as maguey angustifolia.
In the case of common names, the most appropriate thing will be to name them as magueyes, for example Maguey Espadín or maguey Zapupe or maguey Amole or maguey de campo or maguey Espadilla or maguey Mezcal or maguey Bacanora, these names are attributed to Agave angustifolia according to the region you are in.
Now you know how to properly use the word Maguey and Agave and they cannot always be used as synonyms.