Desert Agave

Agave deserti

Photo © by Stan Shebs

This photo was taken by Stan Shebs in Palm Canyon, California in March 2005. This image is hosted at Wikipedia.

SUCCULENT : A robust plant with a basal rosete of large, stiff, succulent leaves. Mature plants can be 1½ m in dia. and 1½ m tall and are unbranched. Several plants may be found growing in close association having reproduced vegetatively via pups.

ARMED: Sharp spines at leaf tips and along leaf margins.

LEAVES: Long, blade-like leaves are disposed just above ground level and are thick, succulent.

RANGE: On rocky slopes in Upper Sonoran Desert and Mojave Desert of Arizona, California and Sonora and hence occasionally into higher elevation Interior Chaparral and Pinon-Juniper vegetation types.

FLOWERS: Large yellow flowers numbering in the hundreds borne at the apex of tall branching stalks that rise 3 to 6 m. The parent plant will die after blooming as the fruit and seeds develop. Flowers open late spring to early summer.

FRUIT: Five centimeter oblong fleshy capsules with three valves.

Asparagaceae -- Agave/Asparagas Family

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inflorescence of Agave desertii

Daily temperatures were exceding 35°C every day when this photo was taken on 26 May 2013 in Alamo Canyon, Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, Arizona, USA.

More Information:

Sonoran Desert Field Guide
Sonoran Desert Places
Sonoran Desert Naturalist Home Page


Copyright Michael J. Plagens, 1999-2014