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Glendale Public Library
Xeriscape Demonstration Garden Information Sheet

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Agave bovicornuta-Cow's Horn Agave

This is one of the most ornamental of the agaves coming to us from the Chihuahuan Desert and Mexico.  Cow's Horn Agave is a medium-sized, non-offsetting and fast-growing solitary plant that grows to 3' tall and 4' wide with a rosette of medium to dark green leaves.  Its leaves are lance-shaped; wider in the middle, and tapering to the tip.  The leaves measure 2-2.5 feet long and 6-8 inches wide at the widest point, narrowing to a sharp terminal point.  Leaf edges are clothed with highly decorative, dark brown teeth that curve both away from, and back towards the center of the plant.  These two types of teeth make the leaf edges quite unusual.  Distinctive bud imprints only add to the package.

The 15-22 foot tall flower stalks are branched with 20-30 short side branches.  Flower stalks are adorned with bright yellow and green flowers that measure about 2" long.  As with most Agave species, the flower stalk signals the end of that plant's life cycle.

Since full sun or reflected heat exposures can result in some sunburn on the leaves, a filtered shade exposure is ideal. It makes a stunning container plant!  It does need good drainage.

Webmaster & Author George Hull Last Updated August 10, 2003