Agave palmeri Engelm.
Palmer's century plant, Palmer agave, Blue century plant
Agavaceae (Century-Plant Family)
USDA Symbol: agpa3
The basal rosette of stiff, succulent, sword-like, spine-tipped leaves are distinctively bluish in color. Greenish-yellow flowers, tinged with purple, appear in a cluster at top of a tall flower stalk. A tall stout flower stalk, resembling a huge candelabrum, growing from center of a compact rosette of thick, rigid, narrowly lanceolate, grayish-green leaves. The plant blooms only once, after which the several-year-old agave dies.
Century plants such as this provided Native Americans in the Southwest with food, beverages, fiber, soap, medicine, and lances.
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Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Size Class: 1-3 ft.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Yellow , Green
Bloom Time: Jun , Jul , Aug
DistributionUSA: AZ , NM
Native Distribution: NM, s. AZ & Sonora
Native Habitat: Rocky, open slopes; 3500 to 7500 ft.
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Low
Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil Description: Dry, rocky soils.
Conditions Comments: Considered easy to grow and somewhat frost-hardy.
Butterflies and Moths of North America (BAMONA)Agave palmeri is a larval host and/or nectar source for:
Arizona Giant-Skipper |
Learn more at BAMONA
From the National Organizations DirectoryAccording to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:
Tohono Chul Park, Inc. - Tucson, AZ
BibliographyBibref 1186 - Field Guide to Moths of Eastern North America (2005) Covell, C.V., Jr.
Bibref 1185 - Field Guide to Western Butterflies (Peterson Field Guides) (1999) Opler, P.A. and A.B. Wright
Bibref 995 - Native Landscaping from El Paso to L.A. (2000) Wasowski, S. and A. Wasowski
Search More Titles in Bibliography
From the ArchiveWildflower Newsletter 1988 VOL. 5, NO.5 - Penny Campaign Grows Oklahoma Wildflowers, Wildflower Center Collects Honors, Di...
Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Agave palmeri in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Agave palmeri in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Agave palmeri
MetadataRecord Modified: 2009-02-20
Research By: TWC Staff