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Agave

Common Name(s):

Previously known as:

  • Polianthes
Phonetic Spelling
ah-GAH-vay
This plant has low severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

Sometimes described as fierce and outspoken, agaves give great bones to the body of your garden, support gardening style in the heat of summer and keep their composure through winter rain and snow.  Great structure, unique foliage, and a flower stalk that can stretch up to 40 feet in the air are a few interesting features of agaves. Some tolerate frost but most grow in dry climates in zone 9 and above.

Often called “century plants,” this genus is comprised of succulent perennials that patiently grow and accumulate their reserves to put out one grand flower show.  Flowering doesn’t take 100 years.  They will typically hold out for five to ten seasons before producing a monstrously tall stalk of yellow flowers that is well worth the wait.  The offsets or “pups” are produced as the original expires.

Agaves are found native in the most challenging desert habitats of Mexico and the southwestern United States.  They can survive the hottest, driest summer that North Carolina can bring.  Agaves will benefit from as much sunshine as you can afford and respond well to fertilizer and water in the summer.  Keep their feet from staying wet; agaves require very good drainage, especially during our cool, wet winters.

Sunny spots and rock gardens are great places for agaves.  Larger species, such as Agave americana, grow five feet wide and produce tall flower spikes, while smaller versions and other species, such as Agave parryi, can display a more compact stature with equally beautiful, although slightly shorter, flower stalks. Select silver, blue, or variegated leaves and colorful spines to draw even more attention to this succulent, no matter the size.

 

 

Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#sun#yellow#poisonous#full sun#heat tolerant#houseplant#blue#drought tolerant#perennial#specimen#yellow flowers#accent plant#silver#dry soil tolerant#agave#spiny leaves#rock garden#container
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#sun#yellow#poisonous#full sun#heat tolerant#houseplant#blue#drought tolerant#perennial#specimen#yellow flowers#accent plant#silver#dry soil tolerant#agave#spiny leaves#rock garden#container
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Agave
    Family:
    Agavaceae
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    USA, Mexico
    Edibility:
    Used to make a sugar substitute sweetener.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Houseplant
    Perennial
    Poisonous
    Succulent
    Habit/Form:
    Clumping
    Growth Rate:
    Slow
    Maintenance:
    Low
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Available Space To Plant:
    12 inches-3 feet
    3 feet-6 feet
    6-feet-12 feet
    Usda Plant Hardiness Zone:
    9a, 9b, 10a, 10b, 11a, 11b
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Gold/Yellow
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Spike
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Tubular
    Flower Description:
    Tall spikes of yellow tubular flowers
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Blue
    Gold/Yellow
    Gray/Silver
    Green
    Variegated
    White
    Leaf Feel:
    Fleshy
    Prickly
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Rosulate
    Leaf Margin:
    Serrate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Description:
    Large rosettes of strong fleshy leaves with sharp teeth on the margins.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Container
    Houseplants
    Landscape Theme:
    Drought Tolerant Garden
    Rock Garden
    Winter Garden
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Drought
    Heat
    Problems:
    Contact Dermatitis
    Poisonous to Humans
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    Low
    Poison Symptoms:
    Poison part: Plant sap from leaves Poison Delivery Mode: Dermatitis Symptoms: Skin irritation. Immediate burning and redness with developing blisters
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    Unknown
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    Yes
    Poison Part:
    Leaves
    Sap/Juice