Contact Us Host an Event Volunteer Join

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.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

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

Search Smarty Plants
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
4 ratings

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.

 

 

More Propagation Questions

Proper method of scattering bluebonnet seeds
December 18, 2008 - I scattered about 20 lbs of bluebonnet seeds during various times this past fall season. I have read that it is a must to plant the seeds about an 1/8" of an inch into the ground rather than surface ...
view the full question and answer


July 27, 2015 - Hi, thanks for all your help in the past! I have a generous spot in my spacious back yard that is begging to be filled. The top soil is 4" sandy loam, below which is black clay.With frog strangler r...
view the full question and answer

Seed collection from rain lilies
May 14, 2008 - Hello, I have some rain lilies growing in our yard. I've collected some seed heads, but am not sure what steps to take now. They were all off of broken stems (the dogs are not as cautious as I am...
view the full question and answer

Propagating Dakota vervain (Glandularia binpinnatifida)
August 07, 2008 - Dakota Vervain. We recently moved into a new house in Henly--Hays/Blanco county line. Mother nature was kind enough to provide us w/Dakota Vervain in some of our planting beds while we are getting...
view the full question and answer

Looking for an apple tree to plant in Austin, TX.
December 08, 2010 - I want to plant an apple tree in my yard that bears fruit and will provide habitat and shade. Are any varieties that will do well in the South Austin area? And do I have to plant two trees to get fru...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.