Agave ovatifolia

Whale’s Tongue agave, oval-leaved agave

From £110.00

A unique and beautiful agave originating in the badlands of Mexico and south-western states of America.

Agave ovatifolia has broadly oval shaped leaves in a distinctive powder blue in colour, edged in dark thorns. These gorgeous leaves often show the imprint of the preceding leaf on its surface.

Origin: Northwestern mountains in Mexico
Genus: Agave
Species / Cultivar: ovatifolia
Common Name: Whale’s Tongue agave, oval-leaved agave

Plant Biography

Only recently described, it has become rather popular because of its unusual shape and colouring. The name ‘ovatifolia’ comes from the Latin for ‘egg’ (ovum) and ‘leaf’ (folium) referring to the shape of the leaf.

In the wild it grows on the tops of mountains, which is where its cold-hardiness originates.

Agave ovatifolia
Soil: Well drained
Soil that does not show much signs of moisture, either visibly or when handled.
Growth Rate: Medium
Expect to see moderate growth 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: 1.5m
The plant's ultimate height in typical growing conditions.
Eventual Spread: 2m
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.

Expert Tip

Heat and light! This sums up this attractive plant’s requirements in a nutshell.
Care & Size Guidance

Care & Size Guidance

Agave ovatifolia can be grown outside year-round in the milder parts of the UK, planted in full sun and free-draining soil. Otherwise, it is possible to grow this Agave in a pot and move it to a greenhouse, conservatory or other sheltered well-lit spot during the colder winter months.

Bright light is essential to maintain both the colour and shape of the plant, so a hot, dry conservatory, or a very sunny, sheltered south facing corner of the arid garden would suit it best.

Slow growing in habitat, it can be sped up by being well watered in hot and dry weather, though if planted outdoors it must be kept absolutely dry over the winter to maximise its cold hardiness.

beautiful plant but goodness those spines! Hook-like on the edges of the leaves and a hypodermic needle on the end! But really these extras just add personality to this already striking, strong, and colourful plant. I love it – but will be extremely careful when it comes to placement and re-potting!!!

Julie R.

beautiful plant but goodness those spines! Hook-like on the edges of the leaves and a hypodermic needle on the end! But really these extras just add personality to this already striking, strong, and colourful plant. I love it – but will be extremely careful when it comes to placement and re-potting!!!

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