Slow-growing, award-winning Agave parrasana (Cabbage Head Agave) is a compact evergreen, perennial succulent forming pretty rosettes of broad, closely packed and overlapping, pale blue-gray leaves, armed with gnarled teeth along the edges. The thick, rigid leaves are often irregularly dusted with a silvery blue coating, that shows impressive bud imprints and creates a lovely mottled appearance. They are adorned with a stout, dark chestnut brown, terminal spine that turns gray over time. Agave parrasana is usually a non-offsetting species and its rosettes are solitary, but some plants may produce suckers and form small clumps. While infrequent, mature plants (over 10 years) flower only once. They are topped with a magnificent flowering spike that can reach 20 ft. (6m), and bears dense flower clusters, red in bud, opening yellow to create a riot of color. The flowering rosette dies after flowering, but new rosettes formed by offsets will root at the base of the mother rosette to form colonies. Agave parrasana can tolerate temperatures to at least 10ºF (-12ºC).

  • Grows up to 1-2 ft. tall and wide (30-60 cm). May reach 20 ft. (6m) with flower stalk.
  • Winner of the prestigious Award of Garden Merit of the Royal Horticultural Society
  • Easily grown in slightly acidic, sandy or gravelly, well-drained soils in full sun. Will appreciate some shade in very hot areas. Irrigate occasionally to rarely. Although drought tolerant, this plant will benefit from supplemental water in the heat of summer.
  • Great for beds and borders, city gardens, rock gardens, succulent gardens or Mediterranean gardens. Ideal as an accent plant in sunny borders or in decorative containers.
  • Plant away from foot traffic: the needle-sharp spines on the leaf tips can be a hazard to humans and pets. Don't plant this Agave near paths or walkways
  • Attracts hummingbirds and birds but is deer resistant
  • Virtually disease free. Watch for scale insects.
  • Propagate by seed, or remove offsets
  • Use caution, safety glasses, long sleeves, long pants, well covered shoes, and gloves when cutting this plant.
  • Native to Mexico