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Agave pintilla


Scientific Name

Agave pintilla S.González, M.González & L.Reséndiz

Scientific Classification

Family: Asparagaceae
Subfamily: Agavoideae
Genus: Agave


This species is native to the United States (restricted to southeastern Durango).


Agave pintilla is the smallest species from the Agave victoriae-reginae complex. It is an attractive succulent that forms rosettes of triangular, pale green to bluish-green leaves with a striking pattern of white stripes. The rosettes slowly grow up to 2 feet (60 cm) in diameter and up to 14 inches (35 cm) tall. In late spring to early summer, the mature rosettes send up a flowering stalk, up to 13.3 feet (4 m) tall, that bears greenish-white flowers.

This species was described in 2011. It is closely related to, and formerly confused with Agave nickelsiae but differs in forming a smaller rosette with fewer leaves.

The specific epithet "pintilla" derives from the local common name "Pintillo" and refers to the white stripes on the leaves.

Agave pintilla

Photo by Walker Young

How to Grow and Care for Agave pintilla

Light: These plants require full sun to part shade. If you are growing Agaves indoors, choose a bright, sunny window with as much sun possible. Agave plants love going outside from spring to fall.

Soil: Agaves will tolerate most soils as long as they have good drainage, but their preference is sandy or rocky soil.

Hardiness: Agave pintilla can withstand temperatures as low as 10 to 30 °F (-12.2 to -1.1 °C), USDA hardiness zones 8a to 9b.

Watering: Mature plants are very drought tolerant. From spring to fall, water thoroughly your Agave when the soil mix becomes dry. In winter, water sparingly about once a month. Plants in containers require more frequent watering than those in the ground.

Fertilizing: Give your Agaves a small amount of fertilizer in the spring during the first two years.

Repotting: When the pot becomes full of roots, it has become pot-bound. If you notice you Agave becoming pot-bound, repot it with new soil in a new pot that is just slightly larger than the old one.

Propagation: Since it can take years to produce seeds, Agaves are usually propagated by offsets.

Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Agave.

Toxicity of Agave pintilla

Agave pintilla is not toxic to humans, but it may be mildly poisonous to children and pets.


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