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Agave colorata is a small, slow-growing agave featuring 5 to 8 inch wide, rough-textured, blue-gray to brilliant blue leaves with undulating and strongly toothed margins. Handsome leaf patterning on the leaf face similar to Agave americana. This plant rarely forms offsets and sometimes even has a short stem below the rosette. When mature, the plant blooms in spring with red buds opening to yellow and orange flowers in a panicle on a 10 foot stalk. This occurs sooner – about 10-15 years in warmer climates than in in cooler ones where 25 years is more often required before flowering occurs. Being well armored, this plant is deer and rabbit resistant. It is also very tolerant of alkaline soils. Native Americans have used this plant and its seeds as a food, soap and fiber source. The leaves and heart of the plant contain saccharine matter and saponins. Sap from the flower spike can be distilled into ‘Mescal’, a potent alcoholic drink. The spines were used as needles by some peoples.
Colorata is a beautiful, ornamental plant that’s great in landscape borders, rock gardens, succulent gardens, raised planters or xeriscape plantings. Leaves have spines on their margins and a longer spine at the tip so take care to locate this plant away from foot traffic. Dramatic in a container as well. Plants stay small to about 2′.
Common Names: Mescal Ceniza, Huachuca Agave
Origin: Mexico, coastal northwestern Sonora
Size Label: 1 Gallon
Mature Size: individual rosette
USDA Zones: Zone 8a, Zone 8b, Zone 9a, Zone 9b, Zone 10a, Zone 10b, Zone 11a
Cold Tolerance: 15 to 20°F, -9.4 to -6.7°C
Heat Tolerance: Extreme
Light Requirement: Full sun
Water needs: Very drought tolerant
Maintenance: Remove pups, dead leaves and spine tips (as desired).
Uses: This is a beautiful, ornamental plant that’s great in landscape borders, rock gardens, succulent gardens, raised planters or xeriscape plantings. Leaves have spines on their margins and a longer spine at the tip so take care to locate this plant away from foot traffic. Dramatic in a container as well.
Propagation: Replant offshoots or plant seeds after plant flowers.
There is a minimum purchase of any 4 plants for online orders. All plants shipped bare root. Other sizes may be available for pick up from our growing grounds in Fallbrook, CA. For more information, give us a call at 760-990-4762.
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