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Agave ovatifolia

 
Agave ovatifolia
Four-year-old plant
whale's tongue agave
Spring seedling, in October

Common name whale's tongue agave
Family agavaceae
Life cycle perennial (Z8-10)
Size 3'
Light sun
Cultural notes well-drained soil; drought-tolerant
From seed germinate at room temperature with exposure to light

Forms a symmetrical rosette, wider than it is tall, of fleshy smooth silver-blue leaves with toothed margins and terminal spines. Takes at least 4 years to reach close to its mature size, and much longer than that to bloom, carrying chartreuse flowers on a tall stalk. Part of project Agave 2018; among the species I grew from seed, this one has grown fastest, and is also the only one that isn't damaged at all in our stronger freezes (into the mid-teens).

Agave ovatifolia
Patch of year-old plants in holding area, June
whale's tongue agave
Third-year plant showing off the malevolent side and terminal spines on its broad leaves
Agave ovatifolia
I love this plant up close – it's so architectural, with the contrasts between smooth sweeping curves and sharp spines, and between fresh blue-green and burgundy tips
whale's tongue agave
Ouch-inducing spines and barbs

In our garden, this plant grows in the following areas: Houston rock garden, left fence border, rock garden zone

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Last modified: June 01, 2022
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