Squid Agave

Agave bracteosa
Category Desert Accent Plant
Size 2' x 2'
Flower Color White to pale yellow
Flower Season Warmer months
Exposure Full sun or filtered shade
Water Regular irrigation
Growth Rate
Hardiness 10°F


This low-growing agave with an irregular appearance reaches heights of about two feet tall and wide. It has an interesting clumping rosette of spineless, bright-green, candelabra-like leaves. The foliage emerges from the center of the plant and arches gracefully, resembling the arms of a squid moving through water. At maturity, this agave sends up a three- to five-foot spike of showy white to pale yellow flowers that form a dense cluster. Unlike other agaves, this species blooms many times during its life, during the warmer months. It also produces many offsets, which grow and mature around the mother plant.  Use it in gardens with cactus and other succulents, in containers, raised planters, and small planting spaces, or among boulders. Mix the squid agave into cactus and succulent gardens. The plant is native to the mountains of the Chihuahuan Desert in northern Mexico, and the states of Coahuila and Nuevo Leon. It grows on steep, vertical cliffs in limestone canyons at elevations of 3,000 to 5,000 feet.


The squid agave likes full sun or filtered shade and should be planted in well-draining soil. This plant tolerates extreme heat and is drought-resistant, but prefers regular irrigation to grow faster. It is hardy to ten degrees Fahrenheit. This particular species also shows some resistance to the agave snout weevil and is usually ignored by rodents.
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