Agave americana variegata: 5 Interesting Facts You Need to Know About the ‘Variegated Century Plant’

Agave americana variegata is a striking and popular succulent known for its bold, symmetrical rosettes and striking variegation. This plant is a variegated cultivar of Agave americana, a species commonly known as the ‘Century Plant’. Its leaves are wide, fleshy, and armed with sharp spines that can be dangerous if not handled with care. The leaves feature a stunning color combination of green and cream variegation, which can vary from plant to plant.

Yellow striped century plant agave americana variegata

Origin/Native Habitat

Agave americana variegata ‘Variegated Century Plant’ is a cultivar of the Agave americana species, which is native to Mexico and parts of the United States. It can be found growing in rocky, arid areas such as deserts and mountain slopes. This succulent is drought-tolerant and adapted to survive in hot and dry climates.

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Variegated century plant agave americana variegata

How to Water and Fertilize

Watering and fertilizing Agave americana variegata ‘Variegated Century Plant’ require careful attention as they can directly impact the plant’s health and growth. As a low maintenance plant, it requires infrequent watering, and the soil should be allowed to dry out completely between waterings. Overwatering can cause root rot, which can be fatal for the plant. It’s best to water the plant deeply once a month during the growing season and every six to eight weeks during the winter.

Variegated agave americana agave americana variegata

Fertilization of Agave americana variegata ‘Variegated Century Plant’ should be done sparingly during the growing season, which is usually in the spring and summer. A balanced, low-nitrogen fertilizer is recommended. Nitrogen is essential for foliage growth, but too much nitrogen can cause the plant to grow too quickly and become weak. Slow-release fertilizers are also a great option as they release nutrients over a more extended period. It’s best to avoid fertilizing during the winter months when the plant is dormant.

Transplanting century plants agave americana variegata

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Agave americana variegata ‘Variegated Century Plant’ requires soil that is well-draining and allows excess water to escape easily. This is because the plant is susceptible to root rot if the soil is too wet. It’s recommended to use a mix of Turface, pumice, perlite, and coarse sand to create a soil mixture that will drain quickly and prevent water from accumulating around the roots. These soil amendments also help to promote aeration and create a healthy growing environment for the plant.

Century trees agave americana variegata

When planting Agave americana variegata ‘Variegated Century Plant’, it’s important to choose a pot that allows for proper drainage. Terracotta pots are an excellent choice as they are porous and allow air to circulate around the roots. They also absorb excess moisture, which helps to prevent water from accumulating around the roots. It’s important to avoid using plastic pots or containers as they can retain moisture, leading to root rot.

Century plants poisonous agave americana variegata

It’s also essential to ensure that the soil pH is between 6.0 and 7.5, as this is the optimal range for Agave americana variegata ‘Variegated Century Plant’. If the soil pH is too acidic or too alkaline, it can affect the plant’s growth and nutrient absorption. A soil test kit can be used to determine the soil pH and make any necessary adjustments.

Century plant size agave americana variegata

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How to Propagate

Agave americana variegata ‘Variegated Century Plant’ can be propagated through offsets or pups that grow at the base of the mother plant. These pups can be separated and replanted in a new pot with well-draining soil. It is important to wait until the pups have developed their own root system before separating them from the mother plant.

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Agave variegata americana agave americana variegata

Light Requirements

Agave americana variegata ‘Variegated Century Plant’ requires a lot of sunlight to grow properly. As a succulent, it is adapted to thrive in arid, sunny environments. Ideally, it should be planted in a location that receives full sun to partial shade, which is at least six hours of direct sunlight per day. If the plant receives too much shade, the leaves may lose their variegation and become greener.

Agave plant flower bloom agave americana variegata

When growing Agave americana variegata ‘Variegated Century Plant’ indoors, it’s essential to place it near a sunny window or under artificial grow lights to ensure that it receives enough light. A south-facing window is usually the best location as it provides the most amount of light throughout the day. Artificial grow lights can also be used to supplement natural light, especially during the winter months when daylight hours are shorter. When using grow lights, it’s important to ensure that they are positioned close enough to the plant, so it receives the appropriate amount of light.

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Agave plant blooms once agave americana variegata

Hardiness Zone and Temperature

Agave americana variegata ‘Variegated Century Plant’ is a hardy succulent that can tolerate a wide range of temperatures, from 20°F to 120°F. It is rated for hardiness zones 8 to 11, which means it can withstand temperatures as low as 10°F.

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Agave americana variegated agave americana variegata

Common Pests, Problems and Solutions

One of the most significant threats to Agave americana variegata ‘Variegated Century Plant’ is the agave snout weevil (Scyphophorus acupunctatus). These weevils lay their eggs inside the agave’s leaves, and their larvae feed on the plant’s tissue, which can cause significant damage and even death to the plant. To prevent infestation, it is essential to inspect the plant regularly for signs of damage or weevils. You can also use insecticidal soap or neem oil to control the weevils’ population.

Agave americana variegata agave americana variegata

Another common issue with Agave americana variegata ‘Variegated Century Plant’ is fungal infections, which can occur when the plant is kept in damp conditions or exposed to excessive moisture. The symptoms of fungal infection include black spots, mold, and a general decline in plant health. To prevent fungal infections, avoid overwatering and ensure proper soil drainage. If you notice any signs of fungal infection, remove the affected leaves and treat the plant with a fungicide.

Agave americana variegata hardiness agave americana variegata

It is worth noting that Agave americana variegata ‘Variegated Century Plant’ is also susceptible to damage from cold temperatures, particularly if the plant is exposed to frost. Therefore, it is important to keep the plant in a sheltered location and protect it from extreme weather conditions.

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Agave americana variegata flower agave americana variegata

Is it poisonous or toxic?

Agave americana variegata ‘Variegated Century Plant’ is toxic to pets and humans if ingested. Its sap and sharp spines can cause skin irritation and injury, so it is important to handle the plant with care.

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Agave americana variegata flower up close agave americana variegata
Stoic succulent 2 agave americana variegata

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