Don't be fooled. Inside this thin coating of sweetness is a fiery core of total insanity.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Hardy Plant Study Weekend -- There's Always an Agave

In my recent post about Susie Marglin's garden, I captioned one of the photos "There's always an Agave." This is a quote from a post by Loree Bohl of the blog Danger Garden, who claims (and she's right) that if you look hard enough, on every garden or nursery visit, there's always an Agave. This held true for the Hardy Plant Study Weekend tours, as well.

They don't always look their best, but that may be preferable to multiple amputations, which can lead to Agaves that look disconcertingly like a pineapple. (Sometimes it's an Aloe polyphylla that you misidentify.)

Usually they look fabulous!

Sometimes they're in cool containers.

(Sssshhh, I cheated, that's a Yucca)  behind the Sempervivum

Agave stricta on the right (I think)

Increasingly, on garden tours lately, I've discovered there is often a Schefflera too.

On Hardy Plant Study Weekend, there were also a lot of Hydrangea asperas.

With their weird, fuzzy, bumpy, lumpy flower buds.

And rarely, every so often, there's a Podophyllum.


  1. They're all fab plants, no wonder you get to see them more often than before. Some of the agaves look extra fab where they are planted and positioned. The first pic is an Aloe polyphylla btw.

    I want that lime green wall!!

    1. Oh, it is! No wonder they didn't cut back the burnt bits.

  2. Beautiful vignettes! That's a garden designed with an artful eye

  3. Everything you showed is wonderful. I kept scrolling and scrolling and saying, "Not in my garden," expecting to find something toward the end. No. I am truly deprived. I have seen those huge sculptural blue agaves in town in well drained sunny locations They are exceptional.

  4. You know, I used to grow quite a few asperas. They're hard to work with, though, because they can get so big and kind of rangy. This year, though, I've been seeing aspera "Plum Passion" and really liking it. Have you seen it?

  5. Nice collection of agave photos, Alison. Thanks for sharing! Some gorgeous gardens, indeed.

  6. Errr, guilty here of "pineappleing" the occasional agave. Little ones, though...
    I'm so glad you identified that Hydrangea asperas. I saw it in a garden this weekend (maybe the same one you and Annette were at) and mentally poo-pooed the Hydrangea ID when someone said it. That'll teach me not to be so cocky!

  7. And then there's a man on the moon. :) Would you believe I have not an Agave, a Shefflera or a podophyllum? Maybe someday.

  8. I think that is an Agave stricta - and I think I need to move mine from its current pot into the ground before it develops into a pointy ball like the one in your photo and I can no longer handle it. Great photos, Alison!

  9. Cool post about finding agaves in the study weekend gardens! There are certainly some beauties here! That oak leaf edged fire pit/planter really caught my eye!

  10. I have one! Yes, one agave. In the hypertufa pot I made last winter. I think one will do it for me.


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