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shrub

Cabbage Head Agave

Agave parrasana

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Cabbage Head Agave (Agave parrasana) at Rainbow Gardens

Cabbage Head Agave

Cabbage Head Agave

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Plant Height:  24 inches

Flower Height:  15 feet

Spread:  24 inches

Sunlight:  full sun 

Hardiness Zone:  8a

Other Names:  Noa, Noah Agave, Century Plant

Description:

This compact variety with rounded blue-green leaves resembles a head of cabbage; infrequent yellow flowers with red highlights emerge from red buds, on tall spikes, then rosette dies; an excellent accent plant for a rock garden or dry, sunny area

Ornamental Features

Cabbage Head Agave features bold spikes of yellow cup-shaped flowers with red overtones rising above the foliage in mid summer, which emerge from distinctive red flower buds. It has gray-variegated bluish-green foliage. The succulent round leaves remain bluish-green throughout the winter. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.

Landscape Attributes

Cabbage Head Agave is a multi-stemmed evergreen shrub with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its strikingly bold and coarse texture can be very effective in a balanced landscape composition.

This shrub will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and usually looks its best without pruning, although it will tolerate pruning. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. Gardeners should be aware of the following characteristic(s) that may warrant special consideration;

  • Suckering
  • Spiny

Cabbage Head Agave is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Accent
  • General Garden Use
  • Container Planting

Planting & Growing

Cabbage Head Agave will grow to be about 24 inches tall at maturity extending to 15 feet tall with the flowers, with a spread of 24 inches. It tends to fill out right to the ground and therefore doesn't necessarily require facer plants in front. It grows at a slow rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 10 years.

This shrub should only be grown in full sunlight. It prefers dry to average moisture levels with very well-drained soil, and will often die in standing water. It is considered to be drought-tolerant, and thus makes an ideal choice for a low-water garden or xeriscape application. It is not particular as to soil pH, but grows best in poor soils. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This species is not originally from North America. It can be propagated by multiplication of the underground bulbs.

Cabbage Head Agave makes a fine choice for the outdoor landscape, but it is also well-suited for use in outdoor pots and containers. Its large size and upright habit of growth lend it for use as a solitary accent, or in a composition surrounded by smaller plants around the base and those that spill over the edges. Note that when grown in a container, it may not perform exactly as indicated on the tag - this is to be expected. Also note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.

 
 
Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Characteristics
Accent  Garden  Container 
Applications
Flowers  Texture  Plant Form 
Ornamental Features

Disclaimer - This Plant Finder tool is an online resource representing many of the varieties that we carry over the course of the season, and is intended for informational purposes only. Inventory varies seasonally, so we cannot guarantee that every plant will be in stock at all times - please contact the store directly for current availability. It does not include our entire selection of plants, so be sure to visit our store to see varieties that may not be represented on this list.