Agave Species, Coastal Agave, Mescal Ceniza, Century Plant

Agave colorata

Family: Asparagaceae
Genus: Agave (a-GAH-vee) (Info)
Species: colorata (kol-oh-RAY-tuh) (Info)


Cactus and Succulents

Water Requirements:

Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun


Grown for foliage


Foliage Color:




6-12 in. (15-30 cm)

12-18 in. (30-45 cm)

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


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:

Late Winter/Early Spring

Mid Spring

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

From seed; germinate in vitro in gelatin, agar or other medium

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:

Chandler Heights, Arizona

Fountain Hills, Arizona

Gilbert, Arizona

Phoenix, Arizona

Queen Creek, Arizona

Tucson, Arizona

Reseda, California

Richmond, California

San Diego, California

San Marino, California

Spring Valley, California

Thousand Oaks, California

Meriden, Connecticut

Blue Diamond, Nevada

Henderson, Nevada

Grenoble, Rhône-Alpes

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Mar 13, 2007, ilovemyplants from Meriden, CT wrote:

I just bought this certain agave at a local Home Depot this past November.It has grown 3 new leaves as I keep it in a southern exposed window.Can't wait to put it out for the summer & see how well it grows.I wish we could grow agaves in our gardens here in CT.I think thier just so neat looking...


On Feb 8, 2005, htop from San Antonio, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

I have not grown this plant. Common name: Mezcal ceniza
This is one of the most difficult to cultivate agaves because duplicating the habital conditions at its native location is difficult. It thrives in a stony soil with good drainage. It has an attractive cross-zoning (horizontal color variation bands).


On Jan 14, 2004, palmbob from Acton, CA (Zone 8b) wrote:

Great agave with wavy leaves and nice pale blue coloration. Slow to sucker and not a fast grower, which is a good thing since these are monocarpic. These can take over 12-15 years to flower so they may stay in your garden a long time. Very ornamental Mexican native.

Some say difficult to cultivate?? Yet I have treated it 'brutally' like most of my Agaves and found it as easy and durable as the rest. Had this plant for nearly 10 years, moved it about (transplanted), ignored it, let it get frost, overwatered it etc. and still never had a problem. Even dug out the suckers carelessly, stuffing them here and there about the garden, some with narry a root, and all so far are doing great. Perhaps in a more inhospitable climate than S California this might be a tougher grow, b... read more