Agave americana L.

Century Plant

Plants large, freely suckering. Rosettes stemless, 1-2 m tall, 2-3.7 m wide. Leaves lanceolate, rigid, 1-2 m long, 15-25 cm wide, light grey-glaucous to light green; margin toothed, teeth 5-10 mm long, 20-60 mm apart; terminal spine 3-5 cm long. Inflorescence 5-9 m tall.


Cultivated in Australia since at least 1864. Commonly grown in older gardens and occurs as an occasional garden escape.

var. americana Leaves unvariegated, frequently reflexed; margins undulate. Capsules 4-5 cm long; seeds 7-8 mm long, 5-6 mm wide. Generally grown as the variegated cultivars 'Marginata' and 'Mediopicta'.

var. expansa (Jacobi) H. Gentry Leaves unvariegated, straight; margins straight or crenate. Capsules 4.5-6 cm long; seeds 8-8.5 mm long, 5.5-7 mm wide.

Source: Forster, P. (2005). Agavaceae. In: Spencer, R.. Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 5. Flowering plants. Monocotyledons. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press.

Distribution map

Agave americana 'Marginata'

Leaves frequently reflexed; margins yellow and undulate. Capsules 4-5 cm long; seeds 7-8 mm long, 5-6 mm wide.

Agave americana 'Mediopicta'

Leaves with a wide central yellow stripe.

kingdom Plantae
phylum   Tracheophyta
class    Magnoliopsida
superorder     Lilianae
order      Asparagales
family       Asparagaceae
genus        Agave L.