Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Agave potatorum var. verschaffeltii

Agave potatorum var. verschaffeltii is also known as A. potatorum minor. The minor refers to the very small size of this variety compared to the regular A. potatorum. If I keep this miniature Agave in a small pot, it will only get about 6 inches high and 8 inches wide. This particular variety is blue-gray with well-defined leaf imprints on each fleshy leaf, and it is usually solitary. It is not as frost tolerant as many Agave species and it does require light shade in Phoenix. It is the perfect Agave for container gardening.

There is an A. potatorum cultivar called Shoji-Raijin developed in Japan that is gaining popularity here. There are two differences in the Shojii-Raijin and the A. potatorum minor. The cultivar has no leaf imprints and it readily produces offsets, quickly filling small pots.

Next month I plan to transfer this miniature Agave into an expensive piece of Picante Planter pottery that I’ve been saving for just the perfect specimen. This A. potatorum minor fits the bill!


Tracy said...

Don't you just love the feeling of finding the "right" plant for a certain pot or planter? I was checking out the link you have to the pots, wow, they are pretty nice. Everyone is so clumsy in my house that it would be broken in a day.....lol. Can't wait to see pics of the two together.

GardenJoy4Me said...

Hi Aiyana
I love this little miniature !
The blue gray colours that i have with some of my little ones is fascinating .. such a pretty colour to see ! ..I'm glad to be learning more and more from your site. Thanks !

Julie said...

Those planters are gorgeous! The agave plant is so cute...nice color...perfect for...ME!!!!!

Green thumb said...

Dear Aiyana, I too have a similar Agave which I have labelled as 'Agave Isthmensis' in my post-http://indigarden.blogspot.com/2007/09/captivating-cacti.html
Is there any way to differentiate the two? They look quite similar...

No Rain said...

Tracy, Julie,
I have two of the Picante Planter pots--both about the same size but shaped differently, and after considering both of them, I think I'm going with the contemporary triangle--my first choice.
I'm really glad you like visiting and are learning about our desert plants.

Green Thumb,
Some collectors believe that A. isthmensis is a hybrid of A. potatorum since they are sometimes found growing closely together in their native Mexico, and look so similar. The dwarf varieties of the two are called Butterfly Agave, along with a couple of other dwarf species. I think the only way to tell the two apart is to know the "pedigree" of the plant and trust that the seller knows for sure when labeling. Agave experts and specialists may be able to distinguish between the two species by looking for subtle differences in characteristics.