Agave americana

From Hortipedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Hortipedia Commons %LABEL_PRINTING QR Code

Agave americana L.

Agavaceae

Life form: perennial
Usage: economic plant

Exposure: sun   9

Moisture: dry

Soil: sand - Soil: gritty-sandy - Soil: sandy loam - Soil: gritty loam - Soil: sandy clay

Arrangement: basal
Leaves: evergreen

Shape: lanceolate

Division: simple

Shape: funnel-shaped
Fruit: loculicidal capsule

3A / f8da21 

Inflorescence: cluster

Petals: not specified
Habit: not specified

Growth form: not specified

Taxonomy

Divisio:
Magnoliophyta
Subdivisio:
Magnoliophytina
Classis:
Liliopsida
Subclassis:
Liliidae
Superordo:
Lilianae
Ordo:
Amaryllidales

Agave americana is a succulent perennial.

Naming

Agave americana was described by Carl Linnaeus in 1753. The name is considered as validly published.

Taxonomy

Agave americana is the type species of the genus Agave which contains approximately 257 to 341 species and belongs to the family of the Agavaceae (Century-plant Family).

Characteristics

Growth

The perennials are comparatively slow-growing and reach heights of 1,8 to 2 metres. The plants reach a width of 0.6 to 1 metres.

Leaves

Agave americana is evergreen. The mid-green, simple leaves are basal. They are lanceolate with spiny margins. The surface of the leaves is glabrous.

Flowers and Fruits

Agave americana produces cluster of yellow funnel-shaped flowers from July to August. The plants are hermaphroditic.

The perennials produce brown loculicidal capsules in autumn.

Root System

Distribution

Agave americana is native to Mexico and is naturalized in the tropics and the Subtropics.

Cultivation

The perennials prefer a sunny situation on dry soil. They prefer sandy, gritty-sandy, sandy-loamy, gritty-loamy or sandy clay soil with a pH between 6 and 8. The plants need a soil depth of at least 76 centimetres for good growth. They tolerate temperatures down to -7°C (USDA zone 9).

Tolerance of special soil conditions

  • none: drought
  • low: calcareous soil

Uses

The ornamental value of Agave americana lies especially in the ornamental leaves. The recommended planting distance is 1,5 to 1,8 metres. Suited as container plant and as indoor plant.

Maintenance and Propagation

The plants usually require only a moderate amount of maintenance.


Cultivars

Pests and Diseases

Cankers indicate an infection with fireblight. Generously remove affected parts and destroy them.

Waxy fibres and honeydew on leaves and shoots indicate an infestation with mealybugs. Apply insecticide or control biologically with predatory ladybirds.

Scale insects that sit on the undersides of the leaves and excrete honeydew can be controlled with insecticide or biologically with parasitic wasps.

Literature

  • Walter Erhardt, Erich Götz, Nils Bödeker, Siegmund Seybold: Der große Zander. Eugen Ulmer KG, Stuttgart 2008, ISBN 978-3-8001-5406-7. (Ger.)
  • Christoper Brickell (Editor-in-chief): RHS A-Z Encyclopedia of Garden Plants. Third edition. Dorling Kindersley, London 2003, ISBN 0-7513-3738-2.

Non-commercial Links

This might also interest you

Commercial Links