Agaves grow in both tropical and desert areas. These succulents have a large rosette of thick, fleshy leaves. The leaves can be up to 10 feet long, with sharp points.
Agaves grow slowly and flower only once, typically after at least ten years. When the plant begins to flower, a tall stem grows from the center of the leaves, bearing a large number of short tubular flowers.
After an agave blooms, it will die, but can be easily propagated from plantlets located at the base of the stem.
The sap from many agave can cause skin irritation. When working with one, wear gloves and handle with care.
Agaves need very little water once established and are a good pick for the Florida-Friendly Landscape, being both drought-tolerant and often salt-tolerant, too.
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