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Staff Picks: Barbara’s Mangave


Mangave, a hybrid of the Agave and Manfreda, is a beautiful and easy plant that stands out, requires little maintenance, and does not have any spines or points. They are available in a variety of colors and forms, with the potential for unique spotting as well as wavy and cascading foliage.

Mangave can provide an excellent focal point in your garden or landscape and can be potted or planted in the ground. Barbara, our accountant since the early 90s here at Gill’s, does not consider herself a plant person, but here’s what she has to say about her Mangave:  

“I’ve never been great with plants; my husband jokes that my house is where plants go to die! So, the Mangave we had installed in our front porch bed has been a nice surprise. The day I walked out and saw a spike growing up out of the middle of the plant, I felt like a proud Mama! That spike (which started out looking like giant asparagus) has continued to get taller and taller. It is currently about 7 feet tall! I can’t help thinking about Jack and the Beanstalk every time I walk past it! 

As it grew, clusters of buds began to appear on the upper portion of the stalk. My fear was that it would be so tall when it bloomed that I would need a ladder to see what it produced, but fortunately, that wasn’t the case. The buds have begun opening into unique spiky ‘flowers’. It has been so much fun watching this process, and it will be interesting to see what else it has in store!”

-Barbara Elliott

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  1. james says

    Yes, the parent plant does not resume growing after bloom, and slowly dies. It will often produce viable offshoots to replace itself.

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