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Agave desmetiana (Smooth Agave)


Scientific Name

Agave desmetiana Jacobi

Common Names

Smooth Agave, Dwarf Century Plant, Spineless Jade Agave


Agave ananassoides, Agave de-meesteriana, Agave demeesteriana, Agave desmettiana, Agave miradorensis, Agave regeliana

Scientific Classification

Family: Asparagaceae
Subfamily: Agavoideae
Genus: Agave


Agave desmetiana, also known as Agave de-meesteriana, is a succulent that forms rosettes of attractive dark blue-green leaves. Each leaf is fleshy, rigid, up to 40 inches (1 m) long, and up to 3.5 inches (9 cm) wide, with smooth margins and a single reddish, sharp terminal spine. Each rosette will flower only once, usually at some point between 8 to 10 years. The flowering rosette dies after flowering, but new rosettes formed by offsets from the base of the mother plant will remain. The flowering up to 8 feet (2.5 m) tall stalk rises from the center of the rosette, producing side branches containing terminal clusters of pale yellow flowers. In its native habitat, flowers typically bloom in spring to early summer.


USDA hardiness zones 9a to 11b: from 20 °F (−6.7 °C) to 50 °F (+10 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Agaves are not difficult plants to grow. They are slow-growing and dramatic and will even thrive on a bit of neglect. If you are the type of person who likes to fuss with houseplants and water a lot, Agave is probably not the plant for you. If, however, you are the type of person who likes to set it and forget it, and you have a sunny window, Agave might the way to go. Be aware that some of the large varieties will eventually outgrow your room (unless you have a large greenhouse), and Agave can be aggressive. They have irritating sap and sometimes very sharp thorns that can cause injuries to small children and even pets.

In general, Agaves do not need to be repotted every year. Most of the species commonly found in cultivation grow very slowly and take a long time to outgrow their pot. It is also best to handle your plant as little as possible since they do not like to be disturbed. When you do repot, refresh the spent soil with a new potting mix and make sure the plant is firmly anchored in its pot. However, be careful not to pot the Agave too deep as that will encourage stem rot during the growing season.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Agave.


Agave desmetiana is native to tropical and subtropical eastern Mexico.



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