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Agave univittata (Thorn-crested Century Plant)


Scientific Name

Agave univittata Haw.

Common Names

Thorn-crested Century Plant, Thorn-crested Agave, Thorncrest Century Plant, Thorncrest Agave


Agave lophantha, Agave caerulescens, Agave heteracantha, Agave heteracantha var. univittata, Agave vittata

Scientific Classification

Family: Asparagaceae
Subfamily: Agavoideae
Genus: Agave


Agave univittata, also known as Agave lophantha, is a succulent plant with thick, fleshy leaves that are stiff and wavy along the margins. It has sharp and prominent spines on the edges and tips of the leaves. The flowering stalk is up to 16 feet (5 m) tall, bearing greenish-white to yellowish-green flowers.

Agave univittata (Thorn-crested Century Plant) aka Agave lophantha

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USDA hardiness zones 9a to 10b: from 20 °F (−6.7 °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 cause injuries to small children and even pets.

In general, Agave do not need to be repotted every year. Most of the species commonly found in cultivation grow very slowly and will 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 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 univittata is native to the coastal areas southern Texas and northeastern Mexico, at elevations less than 300 feet (100 m).

Subspecies, Varieties, Forms, Cultivars and Hybrids


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