Thursday, November 19, 2015

I’d admit I have a problem – if it were a problem

How many is too many? Did Imelda have too many shoes? Does Evan have too many Bromeliads? Do I have too many Agaves? Well, in order to answer that question we need to know just how many I have right? Let's count! There are 9 in the driveway...
Agave weberi and friends in the driveway

The back garden, surprisingly, has quite a few Agaves in the ground.
Agave bracteosa, in the back garden

Many of them are planted in what I refer to as the Agave mounds.
The "newest" (2.5 years old) Agave mound, in the back garden

But there are a few in containers.
Agave parryi dish planters

All counted up there are 39 Agaves in the back garden. So we're at 48 total, thus far.
Parts of a couple other Agave mounds - so called because the soil is built up, to help with drainage

And in case you're wondering I did count pups, but only if they were separated from mom and at least 3" wide. This photo has 6, the yucca looking green guy is actually A. striata Espadina form. There were a few pups here too small to count.
The final mound, and a Grevillea x gaudichaudii, heading into it's second winter in the ground 

It's been too wet to take the covers off the containers for over a week now.
Agave 'Sharkskin' - under protective cover

They don't seem to mind though.
Agave ovatifolia, I built covers for just the two Agaves in containers, so they would stay dry

Truth be told I was shocked at the count in the back garden, of course they're all on the smaller side. No monster Arizona Agaves here (sadly).
Agave bracteosa, planted in the ground - the silver ring is completely open at the bottom

Okay next area to be counted, the shade pavilion...
In the shade pavilion greenhouse, which I really should call a dryhouse instead - since that's its real purpose

There are 47, which brings the Agave total to 95.
Another look inside the dryhouse

Time to go out to the front garden...
Agave americana in the front garden - yes, it really is an A. americana, stunted in our climate

Like the back garden I was a little shocked as the number started going up, up, up...
At first glance you probably see 4 Agaves, but if you look close there's another visible in the upper left corner

But there are 6 Agave parryi 'JC Raulston' alone, what was I expecting?
Agave parryi 'JC Raulston'

So the front garden count = 35 (now at 130 total)
Agaves and ornamental cabbage...who knew?

I really should measure this one, it's getting quite large. See the damaged leaf on the lower right? That happened with the new widows going in last spring. Everything up from there is new growth.
Agave ovatifolia

Okay, the final frontier: the basement. For those of you just tuning in these are all outside in the summer, they're the ones of questionable winter hardiness who spend winter inside, where it's safe.
The basement gang

The basement has 48, which means the grand total of Agaves in my possession is 178! Oh my.
Agave attenuata

Well, make that 179, an Agave ocahui 'Wavy Gravy' just arrived from Gerhard.

All material © 2009-2015 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

52 comments:

  1. So you're saying that having 179 specimens of the same genus is unusual in some way? Am I understanding correctly?

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    1. You made me chuckle Mr. S. I can only imagine what your genus counts would look like.

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  2. I am beyond envious, Loree, it's really unkind to make me drool on my keyboard! Question... what kind of mix do you use for your Agave mounds?

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    1. Mix = nothing specific Sheila. Whenever I dig anywhere in the garden I dig up rocks. They range from quarter sized, to first sized. I save them, as well as used pea gravel top dressing from my containers (it's nearly impossible to re-use it when you repot something). Whenever I plant an agave (singularly or those mounds) I incorporate my rock stash mixed with a little native soil. Goal being to get the ground immediately under and around the agave to be fast draining.

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  3. Might have to count mine........mid 30's I'm guessing?????

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    1. 30's isn't anything to shake a stick at.

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  4. There's no such thing as too many agave!!!

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  5. You can NEVER have enough agaves. I should count mine, but I'm a bit afraid of the results. I've been working on updating my agave list; I'm not there yet, but I have close to 100 different varieties (species/subspecies/cultivars). And I do NOT to intend to stop adding to my collection, LOL.

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    1. You are far more organized than I am Gerhard. I need to take a day and go through my tags from this planting season and update my pathetic plant list here on the blog.

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  6. Hahahaha! I love your unrepentance. My family makes me feel sheepish about my plant crazes. I should stop listening to them. 179 is impressive! I have 3 agave, now, and a few bracteosa pups that I'm not counting yet.

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    1. Stop listing to them! And I am so happy your dipping your toe in the Agave waters. Or something like that.

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    2. I meant to say also how impressive the growth is on that A. ovatifolia! I didn't know they grew that fast in our climate.

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  7. I think you have more than I do!

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  8. Problem, what problem? They all look healthy and happy, a collection as beautiful as it is large. If Andrew kicked the agaves out of the house, you chose them over him, and were living in your car with your collection, that would be a different story...

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    1. Thank god I just got a bigger car.

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  9. Amazing collection, just fabulous! The only problem here is that you counted. :)

    (Let us know when you hit 4 digits -- which you might have done already if you haven't shared so many pups with others like me!)

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    1. If I were to hit 4 digits without having moved to the desert SW or opened a nursery I think that scenario Peter suggests might just come true...

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  10. Wowsers! You impress me, Miss Agave. This must be some kind of record for the State of Oregon, right?

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    1. Ha! I doubt it, but you have got me wondering...

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  11. Agree with Peter. I don't see this as a problem. So what if you have 179 agave plants? It's your hobby, your collection. They are all healthy and cared for. They're not children or cats or other public nuisances. The only problem that I can foresee is where are you going to put the remaining species? Grin.

    As of June 2014, the World Checklist of Selected Plant Families recognizes 199 species of Agave and a number of natural hybrids.

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    1. Only 199, I would have though more, although I guess the "and a number of natural hybrids" leaves a lot of wiggle room.

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  12. Collect 'em all! Impressive. I don't think I have 179 of *anything*. I'd better get to work to alleviate my status as rank amateur!
    That A. parryi JC Raulston is quite a looker. Such amazing color and structure.

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    1. It's a good one Tim, able to handle our wet winters quite well. Once I have a pup of some size I'll send you one.

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    2. Thanks! By the way, I wanted to note that I'm very impressed at your use of the subjunctive in this blog title! :) Good job!

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    3. You can be assured anytime I use the English language correctly it is nothing more than luck.

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  13. I don't even think they have that many at the DBG!

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    1. Hehehe, you're funny! I do think I'll be visiting the DBG again next year, yay!

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  14. Wow, I may not have even 179 plants counting all the plants in my patio... and only three are agaves, sadly. So if you counted all kind of plants in your garden you may reach 1000 or 2000.

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    1. Someday when I'm really bored I should do that. Gosh...now you've got me wondering.

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  15. Fabulous! I have a grand total of, wait for it, ONE agave, because "there's always one agave." If it survives the winter, the total may rise in the future. It is an experiment by this much less attentive gardener.

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    1. I love it! So your one Agave is in the ground, right? Which one is it?

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    2. A. parryi 'J C Raulston'
      After reading your agave winter test reports, and some online searching, it seemed the most likely first choice. Yes, its in the ground, because I just can't imagine digging up/bringing in plants for the winter. I wish it well (it may hate me though, we'll see). Oops, I misquoted you I think, I should have said "there's always AN agave," right? Since clearly there could be anywhere from one into the hundreds...

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  16. Well damn, I believe you have more Agaves than I have Bauer.

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    1. Upon reading your comment I became more determined than ever to visit you. Now it's not just to see your garden.

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  17. Most of my local nurseries don't have that many!

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  18. Wow, I feel like a slouch. Don't have noteworthy numbers to that degree in any given species. But this summer I did count how many trees and shrubs we've put in at this garden. It was around 225, not counting two hedges.

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  19. OMG, you are my idol. I ran out and tried to count by flashlight: over 80 or thereabouts, not counting pups. 70 are titanotas. (Just kidding. I do have a ton of titanotas, though -- love those guys.) Gerhard of the Excellent Agave List is right: you can never have enough agaves!

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    1. "Gerhard of the Excellent Agave List" you know that's how I will be refering to him from now on. Although I might shorten it to GOTEAL. Oh and 80...that's a good number! Your A. titanotas are fabulous.

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  20. Nah - not a problem. Dedication is more like it.

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  21. Wow! I would love if you could have a post about how you care for the agaves inside over the winter. There needs to be more out there like that, as I have looked in vain to find this as I desperately try to keep the americana mediopicta alba alive inside here in Germany.

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    1. Any where frost free will do......even a garage......

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    2. Hi Natalie - next week I plan to do a post sharing photos of how some Agave-loving friends are doing it. Feel free to reply with any specific questions and I'll answer them. Poorjim is right though. Keep it above freezing and dry. Mine are under lights (nothing special, just florescents) and I water them once, or not at all, during the winter. It depends on how they look.

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  22. If I were an Agave, I would resent being seen as just a number, after all they all have their own identity and life as a special plant. And who would argue against pups?

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  23. Somehow "The crazy Agave Lady down the street" has a certain caché.

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  24. Yeah, that's a lot. ;)

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