Family: Agave (Agavaceae)
Hardiness: To -5 degrees F, but much more tolerant of dry cold than wet cold. For all practical purposes, a good outdoor plant for zone 7 and up, a good choice perhaps for a sheltered spot in Utah, a bad choice for the open garden in maritime Washington. Grows excellently in pots, long-lived and easily cared for, and thrives in our naturalized greenhouses in Southern Oregon.
Perennial succulent native to mid elevations of Texas, New Mexico and Mexico. The plant makes a bold rosette of spiny-tipped, fat, leathery and succulent leaves, giving occasional rise to the 12 foot flowering spike garlanded with reddish-yellow flowers. The popular opinion that the plant blooms only once in a century and then dies is a bit of a myth (sorry about that). Agave produces a sweet juice that can be concentrated into a superior sweetener, fermented to make an alcoholic beverage (e.d. tequila) and is also used as-is as an herbal medicine for treating irritable bowel syndrome, urinary problems, and menstrual woes. It is a superior medicinal agent. As a landscape plant, Agave prefers full sun to light shade, fast-draining soil and scant water throughout the growing season.
Delivery starts April 1, 2015
This plant may be kept outdoors in a suitable environment, but it is also recommended for indoor growing as a houseplant. Following, find some recommendations for growing Agave in indoor culture (an indoor windowsill, under a skylight, in a sunroom, but without auxiliary growlights):
Pot size: Quart to Gallon. Ultimately, the bigger the pot, the bigger the plant. They can stay small or get huge.
Soil and potting up: Agave do best in fast draining soils. Use a standard cactus mix as described here.
Light requirement: Moderate to High.
Watering requirement: Every 3 weeks or so, more often in summer, less often in winter. THe more light you give, the more water the plant will withstand. If keeping in a low light area, you can manage to maintain a small agave for years as long as water is witheld.
Potential toxicity to pests or young children: none for internal ingestion, which would be unlikely given the tough nature of the plant (would take a lot of chewing). Potential piercing threat from spines at tip of leaf. Recommend nipping these off with a pair of nail clippers or sturdy scissors. When grown indoors, the plant does not need spines to protect it, it has a human to protect it.
Setting outdoors: OK, but protect from hard frost. These will thrive outdoors in subtropics to tropics and do fine in full sun.
Vacations: Probably OK to leave unattended for 6 months or so. !!!SHIPPING PLANTS!!!
Feel free to order this plant at any time, but please be aware that we SHIP PLANTS APRIL 1 to AUGUST 1 AND SEPTEMBER1 to DEC 1 only. Orders received outside these months will be automatically backordered. If you are ordering plants out of season, you may wish to order them separately from your seeds, in order to streamline the process.
If you have chosen a PLANT* (marked with a *), shipping costs are as follows:
1 to 6 PLANTS* will ship for $14.90
7 to 8 PLANTS* will ship for $19.90 (The shipping may be more if you buy other things in addition to plants.)
For 9 or more PLANTS* or if ordering plants NOT marked with a *, we will contact you with a UPS shipping estimate.