Gerald L. Klingaman
(American Agave, American Century Plant, Variegated American Century Plant)
What a dramatic succulent for the southwestern landscape. The American century plant forms enormous rosettes of fleshy, spiky, blue-gray leaves, and the cultivar ‘Variegata’ has the added feature of variegated leaves with a thick ivory band down the center of each enormous leaf. This desert native originates from Mexico and the southwestern United States and is highly tolerant of heat and drought.
In summer it produces fragrant, yellow, feathery flowers that emerge from tall erect stems. These...
James H. Schutte
(Caribbean Agave, Narrowleaf Agave, Narrowleaf Century Plant)
This is one of the most architectural agaves for the landscape due to its striking rosettes of narrow leaves with fierce black spines. Narrowleaf agave is a long-lived evergreen perennial native from Sonora, Mexico southward to Costa Rica. In the wild it is found in a wide range of arid environments, so it is widely adapted to varying soils and exposures. Like other century plants, it only blooms at the end of its life span, so it is grown as a foliage plant. The species came into cultivation very...
(Narrowleaf Agave, Narrowleaf Century Plant, Variegated Caribbean Agave, Variegated Narrowleaf Century Plant)
This is one of the most beautiful variegated agaves. Its striking rosettes of narrow leaves are soft seagreen edged in cream.
Narrowleaf agave is a long-lived evergreen perennial native from Sonora, Mexico southward to Costa Rica. In the wild it is found in a wide range of arid environments, so it is widely adapted to varying soils and exposures. Like other cenury plants, it only blooms at the end of its life span, so it is grown as a foliage plant. The species came into cultivation very early...
(Goldenflower Agave, Goldenflower Century Plant)
Few American Agave offer the spectacular looks and heat tolerance of this rugged native succulent. It’s found in a very small range at higher elevations of the mountains of Central Arizona amidst the chaparral, where it is quite cold hardy. Conversely it is one of the toughest agaves for full sun on the low desert floor. Such a wide range of adaptability makes an excellent landscape plant for a range of arid regions.
Its lovely evergreen leaves are large, blue-green to green, depending...
(Coastal Agave, Coastal Century Plant)
Rich powder blue coloring, modest size and a cast iron constitution make this little known species perfect for arid landscapes. The plant originates in the dry coastal regions of Sonora, Mexico but is also found at higher elevations of Sinaloa where it is tolerant of occasional cold snaps. Wild plants prefer to dwell in rocky elevated positions or in sandy, gravelly soils. Leaves are stiff, wide and covered with a tough skin that’s markedly rough to the touch. This coarse durable skin gives the plant...
James H. Schutte
(Desert Agave, Desert Century Plant)
A cast iron native from the American West that’s exceptional for planting in problemed areas with extreme drought and heat. This agave is found in widely scattered locations from southern California to Arizona and southward into Mexico. In the wild it can occur as a solitary plant or exist in extensive colonies, mostly at lower elevations and foothills of mountain ranges. It has a smaller, upright form with narrow leaves in loose, irregular rosettes that are less defined than those of other species....
(Harvard Agave, Harvard's Century Plant)
The dense blue-green rosettes of Harvard's century plant are dramatic and structurally interesting in the landscape. This all-American native naturally exists in the David Mountains located in western Texas. It is an unusually hardy species that can withstand periods of freezing as long as growing conditions remain dry, particularly at the root zone.
The blue-green fleshy leaves of this century plant are large, cupped and heavily spined along the margins. The sharp black leaf tips are particularly...
(Murphey's Agave, Murphey's Century Plant)
Perfect symmetry, large size and beautiful blue coloring make this succulent evergreen a focal point in any garden. Native to Arizona and Mexico, it is found only near ancient agricultural and settlement sites, where it was grown for fiber and food. Though resembling the common Agave americana, it rarely produces offsets, remaining as a single rosette and thus retaining its striking individual form. Mature rosettes (at least 6 years old) eventually produce a towering flower stalk with clusters...
(Parry's Agave, Parry's Century Plant)
One of the hardier agave species, Parry's agave is a beautiful succulent that originates from the alpine regions of Arizona and New Mexico. It is a more compact agave that sports wide, succulent gray-green leaves with fine, sharp, serrated edges of black. Its neat, evergreen rosettes slowly develop offshoots, or pups, which can easily be removed and replanted elsewhere if desired.
In summer mature rosettes put forth tall, upright panicles of fragrant, creamy yellow flowers. These may be pink...
JC Raulston Arboretum at NC State University
(New Mexico Century Plant, Parry's Agave)
The tight blue-hued rosettes of this compact Agave have unmatched symmetry and are great for smaller garden spaces. New Mexico century plant is native to the mountains and dry washes of Mexico and extends northward into the dry desert regions of Texas and New Mexico.
The wide fleshy leaves narrow towards the top and end with a sharp black tip. Most agaves produce offsets around their base but this one is reluctant to do so, making propagation time consuming and plants more expensive....