Agave americana ‘Mediopicta Alba’

century plant, maguey

With its origins in northeast Mexico, Agave americana is the most commonly cultivated species of agave throughout the world, being grown (and naturalising) in dry climates where the frosts are not too frequent or penetrating.

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Origin: Mexico
Genus: Agave
Species / Cultivar: americana var. 'Mediopicta Alba'
Common Name: century plant, maguey
Synonym: Agave americana var. mediopicta

Plant Biography

Agave americana is native to Southern USA to Mexico, but due to its hardiness has become naturalised in parts of Africa, India and southern Europe.

Appropriately, the species name Agave come from the Greek ‘agaue’, meaning noble or illustrious. The common name ‘Century Plant’ does not refer to the lifespan of the plant, which usually is between 10 and 30 years, but rather makes reference to how rarely it flowers.

It is extremely variable in most of its features – size, habit, colour and frost tolerance – with several subspecies being recognised. The cultivar ‘Mediopicta Alba’ is arguably one of the most desirable. The leaves are grey green in colour with a wide central stripe of creamy white.

Agave am. 'Mediopicta Alba'
Soil: Well drained
Soil that does not show much signs of moisture, either visibly or when handled.
Growth Rate: Slow
This plant is particularly slow to grow, even during growing season.
Water Requirement: Low
Will grow in a drier position and is unlikely to need regular watering once established.
Maintenance: Low
Minimal skill or input needed beyond the basics, a very independent plant.
Situation: Full Sun
Wants direct, unfiltered sunlight most of the day, such as a south facing position.
Eventual Height: 1-2m
The plant's ultimate height in typical growing conditions.
Eventual Spread: 2-3m
The plant's ultimate spread in typical growing conditions.
Hardiness: Hardy
Survives unprotected in an average winter. May need protection in extreme long frosts.
Habit: Evergreen
Always in leaf throughout the year. It won't lose all its leaves at any one time.
Care & Size Guidance

Care & Size Guidance

Although slightly more tender than the species it has a compact growth habit compared to the species, so more amenable to long term pot culture.

Near the end of its life, the plant sends up a tall, branched stalk, laden with yellow blossoms, that may reach a total height up to 8–9 m. After flowering, the plant dies, however it produces many side shoots that will continue to grow.

Water sparingly in spring and summer and keep dry in winter.

Expert Tip

Even while young the plants may produce offsets. These can be left in place or removed and potted up as separate plants.

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1 customer review for Agave americana ‘Mediopicta Alba’

Just had delivery of this beauty. Delivery was super fast , the plant was extremely well packed and in top condition. Cannot wait to plant it. Would highly recommend the palm centre.

Carrie A.