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Agave ocahui (Ocahui Century Plant)

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Scientific Name

Agave ocahui Gentry

Common Names

Ocahui, Ocahui Century Plant, Ocahui Hardy Century Plant, Ojahui, Amolillo

Scientific Classification

Family: Asparagaceae
Subfamily: Agavoideae
Genus: Agave

Description

Agave ocahui is a succulent that forms a usually solitary, symmetrical rosette of densely packed, narrow, dark green leaves. The rosette grows up to 20 inches (50 cm) tall and up to 4 feet (1.2 m) in diameter. Leaves have toothless reddish-brown margins and a gray-brown, sharp, 1 inch (2.5 cm) long terminal spine that bends easily. They are up to 1.5 feet (45 cm) long and up to 1 inch (2.5 cm) wide. The flower spike is unbranched, up to 15 feet (4.5 m) tall, and densely crowded with small bright yellow flowers. Once the rosette flowers, it will die.

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zones 8a to 10b: from 10 °F (−12.2 °C) to 40 °F (+4.4 °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 injure 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.

Origin

Native to Northeastern Sonora State, Mexico, at 1500 to 4500 feet (450 to 1350 m) elevation.

Hybrids

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