Agave is a genus of monocots. The plants are perennial, but each rosette flowers once and then dies . Some species are known by the name century plant. Traditionally, it was circumscribed to be composed of about 166 species, but it is now usually understood to have about 208 species. Agave lechuguilla is an Agave species found only in the Chihuahuan Desert, where it is an indicator species. It typically grows on calcareous soils. The plant flowers once in its life, then it dies. The flowers are a source of nutrients for insects, bats, and some birds. The leaves are long, tough, and rigid, with very sharp, hard points which can easily penetrate clothing and even leather, giving the colloquial name "shin-daggers". Mexican people have used fibers from the leaves. The water stored in the flowering stalks of this plant, rich in salts and minerals, is sold in Mexico as a sport drink. It is toxic to cattle and sheep. Roots of the plants were used as soap by Native Americans.
USDA Zone - 9
Season to Sow - Spring
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