shrub

Century Plant

Agave americana

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Century Plant (Agave americana) at Calloway's Nursery

Agave americana in bloom

Agave americana in bloom

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Century Plant (Agave americana) at Calloway's Nursery

Agave americana

Agave americana

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Plant Height:  6 feet

Flower Height:  15 feet

Spread:  5 feet

Sunlight:  full sun 

Hardiness Zone:  8

Description:

As an ornamental, this variety is usually grown in rock gardens, cactus and succulent gardens; generally smaller when grown in containers; will tend to dominate the lanscape; it is very spiny so not good along walkways but makes a great accent planting

Ornamental Features

Century Plant features bold spikes of chartreuse cup-shaped flowers rising above the foliage in mid summer. It has bluish-green foliage edged in powder blue. The succulent sword-like leaves remain bluish-green throughout the winter. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.

Landscape Attributes

Century Plant is a multi-stemmed evergreen shrub with a more or less rounded form. Its strikingly bold and coarse texture can be very effective in a balanced landscape composition.

This shrub will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and usually looks its best without pruning, although it will tolerate pruning. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. Gardeners should be aware of the following characteristic(s) that may warrant special consideration;

  • Suckering
  • Spiny

Century Plant is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Accent
  • General Garden Use

Planting & Growing

Century Plant will grow to be about 6 feet tall at maturity extending to 15 feet tall with the flowers, with a spread of 5 feet. It tends to fill out right to the ground and therefore doesn't necessarily require facer plants in front, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 10 years.

This shrub should only be grown in full sunlight. It prefers dry to average moisture levels with very well-drained soil, and will often die in standing water. It is considered to be drought-tolerant, and thus makes an ideal choice for xeriscaping or the moisture-conserving landscape. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in poor soils. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This species is native to parts of North America. It can be propagated by multiplication of the underground bulbs.

 
 
Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Characteristics
Accent  Garden 
Applications
Flowers  Texture  Plant Form 
Ornamental Features