Taxon

Agave parryi

 
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Agave parryi - Parry's agave, mescal agave, mescal
Image: Tracy Neal
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Common name: Parry's agave, mescal agave, mescal
Family: Asparagaceae (Asparagus)
Distribution: New Mexico, Arizona, Texas, Northern Mexico
Habitat: Desert scrub, grasslands, pinyon-juniper and oak forests
Hardiness: USDA Zone 5
Life form: Cactus/succulent
Description: Parry’s agave grows slowly to 1-2 feet high and 2-3 feet wide. Thick and rigid, blue-gray to gray-green leaves, up to 12 inches long with a 1-inch spine at the tip, form a dense, globular basal rosette. The leaf margins have brown or gray straight or curved spines. Over time, offsets at the base of the rosette form a colony of rosettes. Each rosette flowers only once, usually at 10-15 years of age. Clusters of pink or red buds give rise to creamy yellow flowers, borne on side branches of a stalk that may reach 20 feet tall. The oval fruits are 1-2 inches long with a peaked end.
Occurrence in New Mexico: New Mexico native plant
Growing Conditions: A. parryi is typically found on rocky slopes at elevations from 5,000-7,000 feet. New Mexico has 2 varieties: var. neomexicana grows in grasslands and scrublands in the south-central and southeastern parts of the state, and var. parryi grows among desert scrub and in oak woodlands in the southwestern part. In the landscape, it grows best in sandy or gritty soil with dry to medium moisture in full sun. Soil drainage is important and poorly drained soils inevitably lead to root rot. A. parryi is very drought tolerant. It will tolerate light shade. Winter hardiness depends on moisture; plants will survive -20F (USDA Zone 5) only if it is a "dry cold" as opposed to "wet cold" winter.
Links: Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN-Taxonomy)SEINetWildflower Center - Native Plant Database

Locations

  • 1: Welcome Garden • Accession: 2013-0039/9 • Provenance: Cultivated of Garden Origin
  • 2: Welcome Garden • Accession: 2013-0039/11 • Provenance: Cultivated of Garden Origin
  • 3: Welcome Garden • Accession: 2013-0039/8 • Provenance: Cultivated of Garden Origin
  • 4: Welcome Garden • Accession: 2013-0039/7 • Provenance: Cultivated of Garden Origin
  • 5: Welcome Garden • Accession: 2013-0039/6 • Provenance: Cultivated of Garden Origin
  • 6: Welcome Garden • Accession: 2013-0039/5 • Provenance: Cultivated of Garden Origin
  • 7: Welcome Garden • Accession: 2013-0039/4 • Provenance: Cultivated of Garden Origin
  • 8: Welcome Garden • Accession: 2013-0039/2 • Provenance: Cultivated of Garden Origin
  • 9: Welcome Garden • Accession: 2013-0039/1 • Provenance: Cultivated of Garden Origin
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