Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Octopus Agave, Amole
Agave vilmoriniana

Family: Agavaceae (ah-gav-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Agave (a-GAH-vee) (Info)
Species: vilmoriniana (vil-mor-in-ee-AY-nuh) (Info)

Synonym:Agave edwardii
Synonym:Agave houghii
Synonym:Agave mayoensis
Synonym:Agave eduardi

One vendor has this plant for sale.

16 members have or want this plant for trade.

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Cactus and Succulents

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun
Sun to Partial Shade

Plant has spines or sharp edges; use extreme caution when handling

Bloom Color:
Bright Yellow

Bloom Time:
Blooms all year


Other details:
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping
This plant is monocarpic

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From seed; direct sow after last frost
From bulbils

Seed Collecting:
Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

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There are a total of 64 photos.
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4 positives
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive Agaveguy On May 17, 2009, Agaveguy from San Antonio, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

Mine is grown in medium shade under evergreen Live Oaks for frost protection. Freeze damaged the first two or three years when young. Now about 10 years old, 4 feet wide and 3 feet high. No freeze damage in past 7 years.

Positive ScottBB On Nov 18, 2007, ScottBB from Norwalk, CA wrote:

Grown in full sun in Southern California. Watered by rain only, once established, for over 8 years.

Positive sonotaps On Sep 14, 2004, sonotaps from Phoenix, AZ wrote:

Native to cliffs from southern Sonora to Sinaloa states, Mexico, at 2000 to 5000 feet elevation. I don't have any trouble with it Phoenix at 1100 feet elevation.

Don't kid yourself, I wouldn't trust this past low 20's. They aren't your 'Grand Canyon snow' agaves. Definitely more sensitive to frost. It makes sense given their native range.

Almost 'tropical' in appearance than typical agaves. No sharp points. Has a more lush look. If it is in full sun, it needs more water in Phoenix so I supply a fair amount of additional water in the summer for them to look their best and for faster growth.

They are a good agave to grow for people who don't typically like agaves.

Positive palmbob On Jul 14, 2003, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

This is one of the more 'user friendly' Agaves, having soft spines and no teeth along the leaf margins. It is also a nice showy plant with an attractive sea green coloration making it an excellent landscape plant. Xeriscape gardens here in the Southwest often have one or several of these in them. It is also a solitary species unlike most other Agaves, so you don't get that massive messy look you can with others of this species. Propogation is by bulbils off the old flower. Seed is difficult and unreliable.

Went back to some plants that were flowering this year (2004) and the old flower stalks were covered in little plants... not sure how big some of these little Agave will get before they fall off, and how many of those will survive, but sure is a lot more convenient to just pluck off baby plants from a stalk, than have to mess with seed... there have to over 500 babies on some of these flower stalks. Most probably will not make it or the entire planet would be covered with this species.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Cave Creek, Arizona
Chandler Heights, Arizona
Green Valley, Arizona
Phoenix, Arizona (2 reports)
Scottsdale, Arizona
Tucson, Arizona (2 reports)
Ashdown, Arkansas
Bostonia, California
Fresno, California
Granite Bay, California
Long Beach, California
Norwalk, California
Palm Desert, California
Palm Springs, California
Reseda, California
Richmond, California
San Leandro, California
Scotts Valley, California
Thousand Oaks, California
Lake Wales, Florida
Miami, Florida
Roswell, New Mexico
Huntsville, Texas
San Antonio, Texas

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