Mangave ‘Mission to Mars’

mangave Pineapple Express

Mangaves are the new must have arid plant for your garden, combining interesting patterns of the Manfreda genus and the hardiness and elegance of the Agaves.

The wide blades of this Mangave are tinted bright red, hence its moniker. The coloration becomes more intense in direct UV light. The long leaves form an arching habit, caused by the tips of the leaves curving downward. Margins curl upward to show off its cinnamon spines, a nice colour complement to the red.

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Origin: horticultural origin
Genus: Manfreda x Agave
Species / Cultivar: var. 'Pineapple Express'
Common Name: mangave Pineapple Express

Plant Biography

A relatively new hybrid, commercially developed in the United States, by hybridizing Manfreda species which grow in the Southern parts of US and Mexico, to Agave. Because of this mixed lineage, the resulting plants combine the best of both worlds: they have the fast-growing habit of a Manfreda while retaining the hardiness of an Agave.

Ideal as a focal point in an arid garden, with endless colour combinations and low maintenance requirements.

A waxy coating gives the leaves a minty-green finish. Leaves are packed in tightly to form a spiky rosette. Tiny spines line the margins, and a very sharp, cinnamon terminal spine complete the spiky look. Plant this Mangave in a yellow or tan container to complete the pineapple look!

Mangave 'Mission to Mars'
Temperature: 5 - 30°C
Temperature range at which this plant is healthiest and grows best.
Eventual Height: 0.3m
The plant's ultimate height in typical growing conditions.
Eventual Spread: 0.5 - 0.7m
The plant's ultimate spread in typical growing conditions.
Care & Size Guidance

Care & Size Guidance

Mangaves are tolerant to higher moisture levels, but once established are drought tolerant. The soft, fleshy leaves are devoid of the dangerous spikes of the Agave.

Mangave ‘Mission to Mars’ can be grown outside all year round in areas with very mild winters such as coastal and city gardens, but like most tender perennials, will otherwise need to be brought into a frost-free greenhouse or conservatory over winter.

It can stay in the same pot for many years, though supplemental feeding will be required, as it is a relatively fast-growing plant. Ideally it should be planted in a container that is slightly wider than the width of the rosette.

Use a sharp draining medium to allow the water to flow freely from the pot.

Enhancing the patterns

Enhancing the patterns

The Mangaves require intense UV light to develop and show off their beautiful patterns. When grown in conservatories and greenhouses, the patterns tend to fade, even if supplemented with growing lights.

Outdoors, a full sun position in summer is ideal. Over winter, kept under glass, the patterns will fade, but will come back vigorously as soon as the warm season returns.

Expert Tip

Avoid keeping the plants very dry in summer; although related to the Agaves, the Mangaves prefer a higher level of watering. When choosing the pot, a low pot is preferable to a tall one. Lighter coloured ones are preferred to dark ones to avoid overheating the root ball.

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