Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Century Plant
Agave gypsophila

Family: Agavaceae (ah-gav-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Agave (a-GAH-vee) (Info)
Species: gypsophila (jip-SOF-il-uh) (Info)

One vendor has this plant for sale.

6 members have or want this plant for trade.

Cactus and Succulents

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)
4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

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:
Sun to Partial Shade

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

Bloom Color:
Gold (Yellow-Orange)

Bloom Time:
Mid Winter

Grown for foliage

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)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)
Allow cut surface to callous over before planting
From seed; germinate in vitro in gelatin, agar or other medium
From bulbils

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

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There are a total of 29 photos.
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4 positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive BayAreaTropics On Jan 23, 2009, BayAreaTropics from Hayward, CA wrote:

When you see it at a nursery it stands out in it's container. And maybe that's where they do best for show.Because,once you plant them with other Agave's or typical dry garden plants they tend to blend in. Might take some creativity with rock or plant arrangement to make them more noticeable.
They are tender. Better in z10 gardens as near freezing temps stress the leaves. Below freezing would do real damage and it might take quite a while for this slow growing plant to look good again.
On the other hand,they might not like hot desert like heat or days of 100+ either. An Agave best for mild climates.

Neutral CactusJordi On Sep 1, 2008, CactusJordi from El Cajon, CA wrote:

My plant first set a lot of flowers and seed-pods with thousands of seeds eventually. Later it also grew bulbils, but mainly in the lower part of the stalk.
24F does them severe leaf damage already.


Positive thistlesifter On Mar 6, 2006, thistlesifter from Vista, CA wrote:

This plant is frost tender and should be protected when overnite temperatures drop under 30 degrees F. I keep the plant on the south facing wall near the house.

Frost disfigures the plant, although it may survive in much lower temperatures.

Positive henryr10 On Oct 30, 2005, henryr10 from Cincinnati, OH (Zone 6b) wrote:

Like most agave it's a very good container plant.
Because of the spine structure, one of the safest too.

Positive palmbob On Oct 18, 2003, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

Don't know much about this species, but it's one of the more attractive and user-friendly agaves, having few sharp spines and nice, wavy turquoise leaves. The spines are unique in that they are same thickness and material as leaves themselves, not projections from them of a different quality. It's almost like the leaves were cut along the edges with pinking shears. It's pretty slow growing and seems to like water more than most Agaves.

In the wild in Mexico, most plants are solitary. Unfortunately, the suckering ones are the forms most propagated and sold, obviously, as they are the easy ones to make more of. So most plants in captivity are prolific offsetters, despite that being a rare characteristic of this agave in the wild.


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

Chandler, Arizona
Chandler Heights, Arizona
Phoenix, Arizona
Bostonia, California
Hayward, California
Reseda, California
Thousand Oaks, California
Vista, California
Loxahatchee, Florida
Miami, Florida
Panama City, Florida
Cincinnati, Ohio
Austin, Texas
Houston, Texas

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