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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Friday - August 10, 2007

From: Laurel, MS
Region: Southeast
Topic: Propagation
Title: Propagation of century plants from "pups"
Answered by: Jimmy Mills

QUESTION:

I have two small century plants...about 10 inches tall...they are "pups" from an older one. one of them has three or four very small roots and the other looks like it was pulled up out of the ground and it has no roots on it. if i plant them in good soil in my yard and take good care of them, will they prosper?

ANSWER:

Century plants (Agave ssp.) are usually propagated from pups produced by vegetative reproduction. Mr. Smarty Plants would recommend the following. Place the pups in a container with a mixture of sand and vermiculite, about a 2:1 ratio. Keep the sand moist, but not too wet, and give the pups 3 to 4 weeks to develop sturdy roots. You can check on their progress by gently removing them from the sand mixture after about 2 weeks. (Be patient and don't check too often). After the roots are developed, you can place the plants into well-drained soil in your yard or garden. If the parent plant is prospering in your yard, the pups should also do well.

Check out this website for additional information about century plants.

 

 

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