How to Care for an Agave Plant

Overview

Agave plants have been in North America since the days of Native Americans. In the 17th century, they were brought to the Mediterranean. The low-maintenance plants are popular in desert landscapes. There are more than 200 different types of agave plants. They are succulent plants, often with sharp spines at the end of their leaves. The rosettes bloom after as many as eight years. Even though they are low-maintenance, there are several things you can do to care for an agave plant.

Step 1

Let agave plants get plenty of sunshine. They need heat and light to thrive, so if they are planted in a semi-shaded location, transplant them to a sunnier spot.

Step 2

Check the drainage at the planting site. If your agave isn't doing as well as you hoped, it may be because the soil is not draining as well as the plant prefers. Add gravel to the soil around the plant to increase its drainage capabilities.

Step 3

Water agave plants twice a month if you live in a low-desert climate. Let the soil dry out between waterings. If you get rain once in a while, do not manually water the plant. Use warm water, as opposed to cold, or you will shock the plant.

Step 4

Allow the agave plant to become dormant in the winter. Water it very little during this time period.

Step 5

Keep agave plants away from walkways and high traffic areas. Their spikes are sharp and can cause injury. Also, keep children and pets away from the plant.

Step 6

Pull out agave plants that are infected with a pest called the agave snout weevil. The insect tunnels into the center of the agave and lays eggs. You will notice the plant's leaves will wilt, then the entire agave will collapse. Removing and destroying the plant is the only way to deal with the pest.

Things You'll Need

  • Water
  • Gravel
  • Shovel

References

  • Desert-Tropicals.com: Agave
  • Life 123: How to Care for Your Agave Plant
  • Cactus Limon: Plant Descriptions and Care
Keywords: water agave, agave plants, care for an agave plant

About this Author

Kelly Shetsky has been a broadcast journalist for more than ten years, researching, writing, producing and reporting daily on many topics. In addition, she writes for several websites, specializing in medical, health and fitness, arts and entertainment, travel and business-related topics. Shetsky has a Bachelor of Arts degree in communications from Marist College.