A striking specimen plant for the landscape, Agava americana 'Mediopicta' has long, stiff, variegated green and cream striped leaves with a wicked terminal spine and serrated edges. Grows to between 3-5 feet tall and wide, so leave space for it to grow and/or plan to remove companion plants as the Agave needs more room. Sap can cause allergic reactions in people.
Light: Full sun
Hardiness: 15 degrees Fahrenheit
Highly drought-tolerant. Plant in full sun in well-drained soil. Take care when working around the plant as "pokes" from the plant can cause allergic reactions in some people.
Senecio, Sticks-on-fire, and ornamental grasses are all excellent companion plants. Because of the leaf variegation, stick to companions with solid-colored foliage if you want the Agave to stand out.
Agave attenuata is sometimes called the "foxtail agave" because its flower spike looks like a long fox tail. These agaves have yellow-green soft, spineless leaves arranged in 12-24 inch rosettes on top of bare stems. Will form masses in the landscape up to 4-5 feet across and 4-5 feet tall.
Light: Full coastal sun to partial shade, partial shade to shade inland
Hardiness: 28-30 degrees Fahrenheit (very cold-sensitive)
May need water during extreme drought. Can cut off, callus, and re-set in the landscape. Pay careful attention to weather forecast during the winter and cover if frost is predicted.
Looks best with fine-textured plants including senecios and ornamental grasses. Smaller, tighter rosette-formed plants also contrast nicely with Agave attenuata, including, particularly, echeverias.
Agave attenuata 'Kara's Stripes' has soft greenish-yellow leaves with green leaf margins. They form upward-facing rosettes. There is some color variation between plants. Grows to an eventual height of three feet. Somewhat slower growing than other attenuatas.
Light: Coastal full sun to shade, inland partial shade to shade.
Hardiness: 30 degrees (very cold-sensitive)
Cover when frost is predicted. Water during times of extreme drought. Salt-tolerant
Ornamental grasses, aeonium, echeveria.