Two plants here starting to outgrow their 6 inch pots... the aloe has prickles (is that the word?) on the top and bottom of the leaves and offsets. No flower pics (yet). The agave has very strong bud imprints, especially on the underside of the leaf. Thanks for taking a look.
Looks a lot like my A. brevifolia, but the leaves are not curled like yours.
This message was edited Nov 10, 2012 9:55 PM
Yes, those names look right to me. Thank you. It will be nice to see the aloe flower, and I will be duly watchful for the aloe mite.
Helen, about the pots... when I repotted the agave last month I had to break the pot it was in because it was so compacted with roots. It was the pot or the plant. That bummed me out because it was a nice pot. Anyway, that's not going to be a small agave, which is good to know up front (final size 4-5 feet). Not a lot of space left in the ground for big spiny plants... will have to get more creative.
I see what you mean about the plant size. It can become a predicament when potted plants are growing to their potential. Especially when resources are limited. And when aren't they? A final size of 5 feet is quite large for a container without the space.
My picture shows a pot that started out with one each of I think 3 types of aloe/gasterias. It has gotten out of hand and what to do with it is now the question for me. It was attractive. I am debating whether to chucking them all or pulling it all apart and replanting again with a couple of each type. Then there is the problem of where to place it once its redone.
I tend to keep some large growing species in 16 to 20 inch pots to limit their size. The large pots allow for a good size plant to develop without becoming the monsters they could become. The pots have the drawback of requiring the plants to be supplied nutrients by a dose of tomato plant food once to twice a year and receive some supplemental water. But it's a tradeoff I am willing to make plus i do have several inground plants, mostly Sonoran desert natives, that are free grow as they please.
48flash when you plant the larger agaves in smaller pots to reduce size do you do significant root pruning each time you repot? I've seen people do that with other cacti/succulents but not agaves.
I mostly have agaves in pots that will stay at 8-10" or smaller as I don't have room for large or even medium sized pokey ones, but I've purchased several that get a bit larger in the hopes that keeping them in pots would dwarf them some. However, several that are in 6" pots grew out over the sides pretty quickly. I didn't root prune at their first potting since they were so young. I really want to get a Mr. Ripples, but it really gets too large for my space, so I was hoping my idea would work.
Baja I agree with you about breaking pots. I don't mind when it's a 6 or 8" terra cotta as they are pretty cheap, but I have a euphorbia in a $25 pot that I've let go to long and it's going to be a challenge to get it out without having to break the pot.
The photo is of Mr. Ripples. Be still my beating heart!
That agave is going in the ground, somewhere. I might be able to make some space by clearing brush at the very back of the garden. I've been hesitant to work up there because it's on a steep rocky slope right above a mean prickle-bush. Maybe I will first install a safe place to stand and then think about it from an improved perspective. Nice thing is that A. montana is solitary, so there won't be much maintenance to worry about later.
Helen, your overflowing pot reminds me a little of the Gasteria bed I installed here 3 years ago. In that time it settled about 2" below where it should be (my bad) and the rock-ringed central area is packed wall to wall with offsets. It looks pretty cool when they're all in flower but that's about it. I think maybe this winter I will yank the whole colony and reinstall a new-improved version with 3 or 4 big plants at ground level where they aren't half-buried. It will look better and fill in again in no time.
This is my Agave 'blue glow'. I've planted it in the ground during the summer and in pots during the winter. The second picture is when I bought it in May of 09. It is getting too big to plant in the ground again. I know it would not have grown half this size if I had left it in a pot. I think the pot I have it in is too small, but it is all I had at the time. I will repot it for the last time in the spring. So Baja, yours is going in the ground and mine is staying in a pot, LOL.
Deborah Baldwin's succulent book recommends that to keep potted agaves in check, one should simply whack off the bottom half of the rootball. I have done massive root pruning on them with no signs of ill effect.
Yes, root pruning is not a problem and will certainly help keep agaves in a pot. Gary: I know people here who would kill for that plant. It is gorgeous! You've done a great job with it.