Tips for growing agave.
Agave – succulent perennial herb, with very short stem or even stemless. The leaves are large, fleshy, solid, collected in the rosette. For simplicity and ease of home care compared to agave, aloe and cacti, is an excellent choice for the inexperienced grower, informs Rus.Media.
Agave (Agave) is a genus of plants of the genus Agave (Agavoideae) of the Asparagus family (Asparagaceae). This is a very large genus, it includes up to 400 species of plants that are common in Central America, the Caribbean and the southern United States. Most species of agave grow in the wild in the mountainous and desert areas.
For the first time, the agave plant was introduced to Europe in the second half of the XVI century and quickly gained popularity as an ornamental, exotic plants. The most common American agave (Agave americana), cultivated as ornamental plant for outdoor growing in the Mediterranean. In Northern and temperate latitudes, a small agave with slow growth are grown as houseplants, and large – like a garden, but with winter in a cool greenhouse.
In appearance different agave species are significantly different. Leaves rigid, Machaon, which has a green, bluish-green, or gray in color, some varieties have leaves with white or yellow stripes. The majority of species at the edges of the leaves have straight or curved spines.
Blooms very rarely – once in 30-60 years, throwing a long boom on which is formed an ear or panicle for a day blooming with hundreds of small yellow-green bells.
The species of agave
American agave (Agava Americana); a bushy plant that has a short stem of 25-30 cm and large fleshy leaves, very spiny and sharp, collected in the rosette. The height can be 12 meters, the diameter reaches 3 m. the Leaves grow up to a length of 2 m and a width of about 25 cm, have lanzado shape and spiky serrated edges.
Blue agave (Agava tequilana) is widespread in the agriculture of Mexico, it is used in the production of tequila (alcoholic beverage). Blue agave can occur in the wild, but in its properties and characteristics are significantly different from domestic plants. Industrial plantations of this species of agave:
Netcorona Agava (Agava Filifera) has leaves longer than 20 cm, which end brown spines, dark green with bronze-green color with narrow white stripes on both sides. The main symptom of this kind – all the leaves on the edges are dry fibers. Flower stems up to 3 m and is densely dotted with yellowish-green and deep purple flowers. The flowers appear in autumn and winter.
Potatorum of the agave (Agava Potatorum) – its leaves are ovate, spatulate, grey-green in colour, of a width of 9-11 cm and a length of 30 cm, at the end of the leaves are thorn dark red, almost black in color. Edge slightly emarginate, with spines of the same color. Home to presented species is Central America.
Toomey Agava (Agava toumeyana) – is a perennial herbaceous plant that forms a turf. The leaves are a rosette with a diameter of 30-80 cm, leaves lanceolate, 15-25 cm and a width of 10-25 cm Color pale green with white stripes on the tip is barbed wire up to 8 mm in length. The flower stalks can reach 3 meters, decorative, greenish-white flowers. Homeland – USA.
Agave Queen Victoria (Victoriae reginae) – recommended for indoor growing, very ornamental. The leaves are a rosette of up to 0.6 m in diameter. Leaf length can reach 10-15 cm and a width of 5-7 cm, the color is dark green with slanted white lines located on both sides of the sheet. At the end there is one black spines up to 2 cm in length and slightly shorter.
Funka Agava (Agava Funkiana) is a perennial plant with a fleshy and narrow at the base of the leaves extending to the middle. This is a relatively small species that are most suitable for growing in rooms with bright Windows. A very decorative look. Propagated by suckers. To soil the plant is not demanding – it grows on sandy and stony lands. Love the open air balcony, terrace.
Drawn agave (Agave attenuata) has a pretty powerful stem (15 cm in diameter), sometimes reaching 1.5 m in height. On top of the stem there is usually a rosette of grayish or bluish-green, smooth on the edges, glaucous, leaves up to 70 cm long and 15 cm wide. Length of the inflorescence up to 3 m, flowers greenish-yellow color.
Care for agave at home
Agave, like many succulents, is not afraid of sunlight, so exposure to direct sunlight will not bring harm. It will perfectly rise at the East-South and South Windows.
Humidity for agave is not critical, the plant easily tolerates dry air in the apartment, but the fresh air is very important, especially in hot weather to ventilate the room.
During the active growing season the plant requires moderate watering, but not more often 2 times a week, you need to soil ball dry out between waterings. In cold weather, watered 1-2 times per month. Requires good drainage so that the moisture does not stagnate. It is important to avoid water in the center of the outlet!
In summer in the room where the agave grows, the temperature should not be below 18 degrees. Optimal range during the summer period is 20-28 °C. in Summer the plant can be put outside or planted in the ground. In the winter and cool periods, the temperature should not fall below 10 °C.
To runt agave is not demanding, in the wild it grows on rocky and sandy soils. It is only important that the soil should not be too wet. Good drainage and the addition of the universal soil mixture of sand will solve all problems. The optimal condition for agave are well-drained, dry and sandy soils. Perfect mixture of sand, leaf and sod land.
Grows slowly, rarely needs a transplant. If necessary transplanted in the spring, if not placed in the pot. It is very important when planting not to bury the neck of the plant, it should be slightly raised above the ground. With deep planting, the plant will rot.
Agave is propagated through the descendents of which are formed at the base of the trunk. Them carefully separated, a little dried to avoid rotting and planted in loose soil mix. It is useful to sprinkle the slices with powdered charcoal.
Seeds can also be propagated, but it is very time-consuming process – most room agaves grow slowly.