Agave Species, Octopus Agave, Amole, Century Plant, Maguey

Agave vilmoriniana

Family: Asparagaceae
Genus: Agave (a-GAH-vee) (Info)
Species: vilmoriniana (vil-mor-in-ee-AY-nuh) (Info)
Synonym:Agave eduardi
Synonym:Agave houghii
Synonym:Agave mayoensis
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Cactus and Succulents

Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Sun to Partial Shade



Foliage Color:



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)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


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

Bloom Color:

Bright Yellow

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Size:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Time:

Blooms all year

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

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

This plant is monocarpic

Seed Collecting:

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Casa Grande, Arizona

Cave Creek, Arizona

Chandler Heights, Arizona

Green Valley, Arizona

Phoenix, Arizona(2 reports)

Scottsdale, Arizona

Tucson, Arizona(3 reports)

Ashdown, Arkansas

Bostonia, California

Brentwood, California

Cathedral City, California

Fresno, California

Granite Bay, California

Long Beach, California

Nipomo, 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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Gardeners' Notes:


On Oct 21, 2015, LaWolf8 from Los Angeles, CA wrote:

I'm in Palm Sp area, I have one triangle off my patio and wanted one of these as a fountain. However, a local nurseryman said they can't take this harsh all day south sun. They have their 15 g plants on an east facing side of shade structure. ah well, looking for another plant for that area.


On Jul 6, 2015, lasertrimman from Tucson, AZ wrote:

Beautiful plant, but limited life span. Ten years, inflorescence and done. Sit back, watch the flowering stem and then replace the corpse.


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.


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.


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.


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... read more