Life and death of the large Agave

Let me start with an apology I had a severe blog malfunction in the last post as it would not work properly and in fact was published before it was complete. I have now updated and amended that post and hopefully normal service will be resumed. I do not wish to apportion blame but Cruella (my wife) noticed that she had not been mentioned in the post and complained vociferously. I stormed off to have a sleep in my garden hammock (more later) and when I awoke from my doze Cruella was standing over me holding a lock of my hair she had cut off along with some nail trimming she had taken. This all may perhaps explain the jinxed post. Anyway enough of this supernatural stuff let’s get back to gardening .

15th June: Things I have been doing lately.

🌵 Reworking a large Agave. As you probably know Agaves are lovely large structural succulents that add real presence to any garden. In my garden I have a number of mature plants that constantly produce “pups” little offshoots from their base that can be safely cut off and transplanted elsewhere. Unfortunately one of my large plants had begun to collapse due to its size and it has become necessary to rework the whole plant. The photo below shows the plant with its main stems lying on the ground.

If you look closely at the main stem you can see distress roots coming out from the stem as the plant seeks to find the soil again.

Using a saw I cut off each of the main stems to create a potential further five plants. Each stem was planted in a simple hole that was first filled with water that was allowed to drain away. The stem is then simply placed in the hole and backfilled keep it lightly watered for a few weeks and you should have a new plant. The photos below show the main stem planted in our wild wood beside the steps leading down to our guest accommodation. A further two were planted elsewhere in the wild wood, whilst two were potted up ready to be planted in our Church garden in the future. Click on each photo for a larger view.

🌱 Trimming grass edges on paths. I know this isn’t a glamorous job, but it is one of those small tasks that can instantly make your garden look neat and trim. Grass here in Spain is usually of the vigorous Gamma type which spreads horizontally. Although you don’t notice it, but over time it gradually encroaches on your paths or gravelled areas. You will need a trowel and hand-shears to do this properly. Use the trowel to lift the grass edges up, then use your hand-shears to trim it neatly in line with the path. The photo below shows my efforts.

I have become a grass stylist.

⛲️ Another water feature. There is a part of my garden where I lounge in my hammock in the Summer. In this part of the garden Cruella (my wife) cannot find me and I cannot be seen from the house. I have always thought this part of the garden lacked something and then it suddenly came to me what could be better than the sound of running water. So I bought a large pot, dug a hole, lined it, fitted tubing through the pot. Persuaded my friend David to wire all the electrics up for me and now I have the perfect sound of running water whilst I swing backwards and forward. The photo below shows the new water feature together with some succulent cuttings I have placed around it.

Heaven in a hammock.

When Cruella saw the photo above she insisted that she should have a photo taken in the hammock as well. So here she is accompanied by Tango one of our Labradors. You will notice that Tango is wet; Cruella turned him into a fish and he spent all morning in the pool.

Notice the apprehensive look on Tango’s face, he spent most of last week as a bat.

🌺 Pink Trumpet in bloom. I thought I would leave you with a photo of the Pink Trumpet Vine I trained up an old shortened Palm trunk. I always tell people it looks like an exploding firework in Summer; and the good thing is this display goes on till the end of September.

There she blows.

Author: spanishgarden

I live in both Spain and the UK and am a very keen gardener. I garden every day and enjoy sharing all the secrets that God allows us to discover in our gardens.

3 thoughts on “Life and death of the large Agave”

  1. That Agave attenuata is not all that big. Where they have space, they can be allowed to lay on the ground like that. The main rosette eventually turns upright again. The foliage of the pups eventually grows and covers the exposed stems. They can eventually make nice strikingly big mounds. I don’t have the patience for all that; but they are nice in larger landscapes. It is one of the agaves I miss from the Los Angeles region. It grows here too, but is not quite as happy.
    Was that palm in the last picture shortened from the top, or the bottom?


      1. You are welcome, but there is nothing wrong with your technique. I might have done it just to keep it in a confined spot. When it lays down like that, and puts out pups at the original base, the groups gets wider.


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