Trying out Agaves

I'm jumping out of my comfort zone and experimenting with planting Agaves. I've been really curious about these spiky plants and why some of my garden blogging friends are so smitten with them.

I acquired a nice starting collection when the PDX area garden bloggers visited Little Prince Nursery of Oregon. I've been keeping my group nice and dry, waiting for the weather to move toward consistent warmth.

Meanwhile, they've been getting plump in their pots and I had a heck of time getting them out of the black plastic containers without looking like my cat had attacked my hands raw. 

Loree, over at Danger Garden, recommended I put the agaves in Terra Cotta pots, thus I would not worry so much about over watering them. I put hazelnut shells in the bottom of the pots to keep the soil from leaking out. 

Placing the soils around dagger-ed plants was not an easy task. Usually, I'm a bit more tidy when I'm potting up new plants.

And darn it...some of the agaves were taller than I thought they would be! I didn't have enough of the larger sized pots. Looks like I'll be re-potting these again next year. 

Agave lophana 'Splendida'
I topped them off with pretty rocks and Viola!

Here are the agaves that I think I have:

Agave lophrana 'Splendida' x 2
Agave 'porcupine'
Agave parryi 'JC Raulston'
Agave gentryi 'Jaws'
Agave 'Red Margin'
Agave amer. 'Variegata'

There you have it; Jenni's new summer mini-garden of Agaves.  I'm not brave enough to put them in the ground soil type is a pretty heavy clay. Well, at any rate, I might just get attached to them and if I lost one, I'd be quite sad, so I'm not going to take chances with my little zone pushing group.

Thus, my education in spiky plants begins.

Are you trying out any new plants this year?

Cheers, Jenni


  1. Aww they look so cute! Looks like you picked some good ones too. Where will you keep them for winter? I'm not doing much new this year, but perhaps at the Rare Plant Research open house I'll find something to tempt me.

    1. I'll be putting them in the garage, but the variegata may come into the house, as the garage is not insulated.

  2. I was surprised at the length of the roots when I repotted an Agave. Lately I've been putting them in tall pots but it still seems like they will need to repotted regularly. Your little Agave neighborhood looks great. I predict new citizens will be moving in soon.

  3. What a charming little group in their terracotta pots....nice selection. I do find them hard to pot up with there spines...I am a glove free gardener but had to get my gloves out for some of my agave and dykias. And Rickii is can become an addiction : )

  4. I had to laugh and appreciate Ricki's way with words (neighborhood/citizens). Can't wait to watch them grow!

  5. I'm not keen on Agaves, or indeed any cacti / succulents, but it looks as if you have done a great job considering this is your first attempt. Having the right container is evidently key. The light-coloured gravel is a nice touch.

  6. They look lovely and healthy, Jennifer. Good lick and good for you to try something different.

  7. They look a bit stabby to me. I considered growing a stabby plant for about a nanosecond this year but after the little jerk stabbed me, I walked away. Tread carefully, my friend.


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