Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Mangave Madness, 2019 round

Back on January 28th (pre-winter temperatures and snow here in Portland), two boxes of plants arrived at my door.

They were from Hans Hansen at Walters Gardens. You know what that means, right?

Mangaves!

Really, really cold Mangaves. It was in the 50's here, but still too cool outside for me to comfortably unpack them, so into the basement we went. I was ready to snap photos as I pulled them out of the boxes but they were still a little frozen from their travels, and there were mushy leaves. I decided to just leave them be for a few days while they warmed up and I could better assess the damage.

Then I set about cleaning them up and discovering just what was in the shipment. Looking at them it was obvious which plants were on the outside of the box, and even which side of the plant was against the cardboard wall.

After I cut away the dead leaves this one still looked pretty good.

Not so much for this one. I let it be and even the center leaf went limp. In the end I tossed three plants that were beyond hope, Mangave 'Dreadlocks', 'Mission to Mars' and 'Freckles and Speckles'.

I wish I knew exactly what temperatures they had to endure en route to my house. I know they left Wyoming, Michigan on Tuesday, January 22nd, hung out in Hodgkins, IL, for few hours, leaving on the 23rd and then showed up in Portland on the 26th (a Saturday) and were delivered to me on Monday. No scans and no info on where they were from the 23rd, until the 26th. No doubt working their way across a frigid countryside.

So let's take a look at what I got, shall we? Oh and if any of this seems familiar it's probably because Gerhard recently did a similar post over on Succulents and More. Except he didn't show you every single plant like I am, sorry. A girl needs a record! Here's the first group we'll look at, starting in the upper left hand corner but then jumping around a bit.

Mangave 'Femme Fatale', Zone 9

M. 'Tooth Fairy', Zone 9, this one might be very favorite.

M. 'Falling Waters', which is listed as Zone 9 on the Walters Gardens website, and Zone 7 on the Plant Delights site, that's a pretty big spread.

I think this one's gonna be tested in the ground, it's another fav (those teeth!), so I hope it does well for me.

M. 'Blazing Saddles', Zone 9

M. 'Mayan Queen', Zone 9, this one's looking pretty rough, but I'm hoping with a little TLC it will put on some new growth.

In the very corner is M. 'Coffee Jitters', Zone 9

'Coffee Jitters' is already producing pups.

Next we've got Hansara 'Jumping Jacks', Zone 9, and no, "Hansara" is not a typo. Quoting from the Plant Delights website: "xHansara, named after our friend and mangave breeder Hans Hansen, is the first ever released tri-generic hybrid between Agave, Manfreda, and Polianthes (tuberose). xHansara 'Jumping Jacks' combines the genes of Agave gypsophila ssp. pablocarrilloi, Agave macroacantha, Manfreda maculosa, Polianthes tuberosa, and Polianthes howardii...whew, just thinking about all that sex makes me tired. xHansara 'Jumping Jacks' forms a 14" tall x 27" wide clump of narrow, succulent, grey-green foliage, sparsely spotted purple. When mature, which should take 2-3 years, expect a 6' tall, highly branched flower spike of lovely yellow flowers, but with an insignificant fragrance. Be sure to check both your state regulations and HOA covenants to make sure an outdoor menage-a-trois is permissible."...that's a lotta text for such a little plant...

Mangave 'Whale Tale'. According to Plant Delights this is the love child of "Agave ovatifolia, Agave gypsophila ssp. pablocarrilloi, and Manfreda maculosa". And more hardiness confusion; they're (Plant Delights) listing it as a Zone 7 plant, whereas Walters Gardens says Zone 9. Plus when I've seen it available locally (one of the few Mangaves to be) it's listed as a Zone 9 plant. What the heck, I'm gonna treat it as Zone 7 and see what happens.

M. 'Frosted Elegance', Zone 9

And the next flat (Seriously, there's another! There were 27 plants in all, 24 that made it), starting with the front row which are all (surprisingly) Zone 8 plants. Left to right...

M. 'Carnival', Zone 8

M. 'Iron Man', Zone 8

'Iron Man' really took a beating in shipment...

But there are already pups!

M. 'Bad Hair Day', Zone 7

M. 'Snow Leopard', Zone 8

Originally all I thought I'd be getting in this shipment were plants like this 'Snow Leopard', ones hardy in my Zone (8 and lower), so all of the "extras" were quite a surprise!

And now the back two rows, starting in the lower right corner

M. 'Blue Dart' Zone 9

M. 'My Dog Spot', Zone 9

M. 'Spotty Dotty', Zone 9

M. 'Shadow Waltz', Zone 9

M. 'Desert Dragon', Zone 9

M. Desert Dawn', Zone 9

M. 'Aztec King' which I couldn't find any info about online.

Mangave 'Thunderbird', Zone 9

M. 'Redwing', Zone 9

And M. 'Painted Desert', Zone 9

Last, but certainly not least (it was the largest plant of all), M. 'Navajo Princess', Zone 7

This one is said to be a cross between Agave montana and Manfreda maculosa, neither of which have a creamy variegation though so I'm a little lost as to where that came from.

Anyway...that's a wrap on the Mangaves, but since you've already endured a super long post I thought I'd share another box that arrived just a couple of days earlier, this one from Joseph Tychonievich in Virginia. Seed grown Aloe striatula (aka Aloiampelos striatula)!!!

Yes seriously. Joseph grew these babies from seed, and they're not even a year old yet!

Look at those roots! He had them planted in a crevice garden in 6-8 inches of of 50/50 mix of sand and gravel. Obviously happy plants.

And obviously happy me with all these new plants!

Weather Diary, Feb 18: Hi 44, Low 28/ Precip trace

All material © 2009-2019 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

Note to self: Mangaves Mayan Queen', 'Spotty Dotty' and 'Thunderbird' went to MH 2/22

37 comments:

  1. I think you will soon be ready to start shipping your own plants. Two of the Hellebores I just ordered were hybridized by Hans Hansen at Walters.

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  2. That's a lot of plants! Was it an unexpected online shopping spree or a planned event?
    I wonder if Joseph feels sad having to dig out his seed-grown Agave and ship them across the country. I get attached to my plants...

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    1. I knew they were coming, but I just didn't realize how many Hans was sending! Also Joseph offered the plants, he needed to thin his out so I don't think he was sad, at least not too sad.

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  3. "Tired just thinking of all that sex" just about made me spit out my coffee. Funny lady! What fun to share in the unpacking of all these new plants. Hope they pull through and give you many years of enjoyment.

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    1. Oh don't give me the credit for your coffee spitting! That was written by the fine folks at Plant Delights.

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  4. That's a crazy amount of mangaves -- Hans is on fire! The 'Hansara' sounds really intriguing with that tuberose blood in it. Wonder what kind of a floral show it might produce in summer.

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    1. It will be interesting to see, although I'm bummed it won't have that amazing scent.

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  5. It's been a few years since I've had plants shipped, but weird to see somebody who would ship in January, especially if they're coming from Michigan! So where exactly are you going to put 2 dozen new plants I wonder? :)

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    1. Plus 1000 to this. I can well imagine things get crowded at Walters in the winter, but there has to be a better way than sending plants to their death.

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    2. I was surprised when I'd been told they shipped, but then Gerhard's order arrived earlier than mine and it was fine...

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  6. Wow, what a mangave bounty! Mangaves are remarkably resilient so they should bounce back in no time, esp. when the weather warms up (*if*).

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    1. There's no if about it Mister! I hope...

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  7. Such riches! I like 'Carnival,' 'Snow Leopard' and 'Navajo Princess' best, I think, although 'Redwing' is nice too.

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  8. Well... those hybrids are intergeneric and trigeneric only if you maintain Manfreda and Polianthes as genera separate from Agave. Recent phylogenetic work has shown that Manfreda and Polianthes are clearly nested within/derived from Agave, which helps explain their interfertility. Although it hasn't gotten a lot of attention yet, both genera have now been synonymized under Agave.

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    1. I'm glad someone stays up to date on these things. For me it's just a visceral reaction to "new pretty plant!"...

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  9. I love mangaves, but I wish the breeders would be more selective in what they release. The appearance between many varieties is pretty small at this point. Kind of reminds me of daylilies, where the difference between thousands of cultivars is almost undetectable. Well, I guess ultimately time will winnow out the best of the best.

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    1. Yes I too have this reaction when the market is flooded and consumers are left to wonder what the difference is. Hopefully, as you say, the winners will rise to the top.

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  10. I'm shocked that they shipped them during January! Most suppliers are holding off shipping until at least March. But look at how many lovelies you have! Now you're going to need more pots!

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    1. He said I should tell him when I wanted them, I knew Gerhard's had arrived fine and it was mild here so I said "whenever you feel like the weather there is good to go"...maybe things changed quickly?

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  11. So So So JEALOUS. What an amazing collection of plants. Tooth Fairy is top of my list without a doubt. Great that most survived, and they will grow so quickly once things warm up a bit.

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    1. Ya, I'm pretty in love with 'tooth fairy'.

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  12. Oh, those poor babies! I hope they recover from their trauma. :( I'm surprised they were willing to ship in January. Freight trucks aren't heated!

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  13. I think 'Falling Waters' is going to be close to a zone 7b plant. Our winter has been mild but it looks the best of any mangave I have planted in the ground. Of course that is based on just this winter.

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    1. That's great news! What part of the country are you in?

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  14. A great bunch of Mangaves ! I am quite taken by 'Snow Leopard' but would not say no to any of them. I've started to plant them out in the garden,but the biggest challenge I have is that many of them seem to be on the snail meal ticket. I fear this is going to be a banner year for those slimeballs once the weather gets a tad warmer.I agree with Davis Sue that many are very similar, but hey, if you plant them in the garden they can become a repeated element !

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    1. Ya, I was wondering about that, darn snails.

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  15. I didn't realize there were any zone 7 Mangaves. I think I need to do some shopping.. I'll wait till spring after seeing how these arrived though. Great post!

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    1. Glad you enjoyed it! And of course that's a dry growing Zone 7, but you knew that.

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  16. Ouch! Sorry about the losses but it helps in clarifying the rationale for the shipping dates so many mail order plant vendors establish. It's still an absolutely wonderful haul and I'm suitably jealous. 'Tooth Fairy' is my favorite of the batch and one I've admired on a certain on-line vendor's page but I can't bear the shipping fee. I don't know what's going on with the SoCal nurseries and garden centers but they remain well behind the curve in bringing a selection of mangaves into the local market.

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    1. It is curious as your climate would seem the ideal, have you gone directly to customer service at your favorite nurseries and requested them?

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  17. I didn't realize there were so many varieties. I have about 10 mangava's but only 3 or 4 varieties. They have suffered floods and freeze and so far so good in the ground. A few leaves got mushy last year, but knock on wood, we are having a mild winter and the plants are so happy. I am saving this post to go back and track down a few of these cool plants : )

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    1. Good to know yours hare still happy Laurin! I'll be using this post as a future resource, glad to hear you will too!

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  18. I'm jealous. Look forward to your updates on these plants going forward. I vote tooth fairy as best also!

    I have probably 1/2 dozen varieties in the ground - one of which one 'Mayan Queen' which just suffered pitting damage from a brief hail storm which my other varieties ('Mission to Mars', 'Whales Tale' etc) seemed to pull through unscathed.

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  19. Thing one - not fair! I want a box of mangaves to show up at my house! Thing 2 - I have many of these in the ground/outside, and even with out cold winter, most of them are fine. So I think Zone 7 is much more accurate than zone 9. Keeping them dry seems to be the trick... Good luck!

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