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It is one of the most beautiful and highly sought after Japanese cultivars. It can be found under many different spelling (rarely seen this name spelled the same way twice)
Origin and Habitat: Garden origin (Nursery produced cultivar) This selection is thought to be a Japanese cultivar of Agave potatorum but some consider it to be a form of Agave parryi.
Agave potatorum Zucc.
Nova Acta Phys.-Med. Acad. Caes. Leop.-Carol. Nat. Cur. 16(2): 675 1833
- Agave potatorum Zucc.
- Agave auricantha hort. ex Baker
- Agave potatorum Tlaxiaco, Oaxaca, Mexico
- Agave scolymus Karw. in Salm-Dyck
- Agave amoena Lem. ex Jacobi
Agave potatorum f. compacta hort.
Accepted name in llifle Database:
Agave potatorum var. verschaffeltii A.Berger in A.Berger
Agaven 186, fig. 60 1915
- Agave potatorum cv. Kichijokan
- Agave potatorum cv. Cubic
- Agave potatorum cv. Shoji-Raijin hort.
- Agave potatorum cv. Shoji-Raijin variegata marginata hort.
- Agave potatorum cv. Shoji-Raijin variegata mediopicta hort.
ENGLISH: Perennial Lucky Crown Century Plant
Description: Very attractive small growing rosette forming succulent, usually solitary and stemless. The bigger it gets the stronger the margination, spines, colour and global shape. (This cultivar shows a few different variegated forms and no two plant are exactly identical one to each other)
Rosette: Open spreading, symmetrical, hemispherical in shape up to 25 tall by 25 wide
Leaves: Short blue/grey with beautiful wide, up-curving, spoon-like shaped terminating in a wide upside-down "V". The outermost sides of the leaves have beautiful lateral, creamy-coluoured variegations (and occasionally also a pale green coloured variegation along the centre of each leaf). Nice imprints are present on the back side of the leaves. The edges are a purplish/maroonish colour. The leaves have large rusty coloured teeth and a long sharp terminal spine that contrasts well with the pale leaf colour.
Flowers: May bloom at maturity with a tall spike.
Subspecies, varieties, forms and cultivars of plants belonging to the Agave potatorum group
- Agave potatorum Zucc.: Small Agave, growing solitary or slowly clumping, that forms an compact to open symmetrical succulent rosette. It is a very polymorphic species with a large range of variability and the size.
- Agave potatorum f. compacta hort.: Dwarf cultivated form that grows eventually up to 20(-30) cm tall and in diameter. The leaves have distinct showy bud-imprints.
- Agave potatorum Tlaxiaco, Oaxaca, Mexico: This population has very nice bright orange marginal teeth.
- Agave potatorum var. verschaffeltii A.Berger in A.Berger: The old name ''verschaffeltii '' is still in use to distinguish plants with sinuous leaf margins and with teeth atop of outward-projecting bumps.
- Agave potatorum cv. Cubic: The leaves grow as if 2 leaves are fused together resulting in some of them having a 4 angled appearance and forming a square shape. Marginal spines can grow on up to all four of the leaf sides.
- Agave potatorum cv. Kichijokan: Variegated form with amazing symmetrical lotus like leaf pattern. The leaves have lateral, creamy-coloured variegations. Nice imprints are present on the back side of the leaves. The edges have large rusty coloured teeth and are a purplish/maroonish colour.
- Agave potatorum cv. Shoji-Raijin hort.: Also called 'Blue rose' it is tiny rosette of plump blue leaves that stay very small and compact. It produces offsets and forms a small clump of 6-7 cm rosettes. Mature plants stays in 10 cm pots only.
- Agave potatorum cv. Shoji-Raijin variegata marginata hort.: Has a creamy-white or pale-green irregular stripe on the edge of the leaf.
- Agave potatorum cv. Shoji-Raijin variegata mediopicta hort.: Has a broad white band down the centre of each leaf.
The leaves have large rusty coloured teeth and a long sharp terminal spine that contrasts well with the pale leaf colour. Photo by: Valentino Vallicelli
Agave potatorum cv. Kichijokan Photo by: Valentino Vallicelli
Agave potatorum cv. Kichijokan (leaf's teeth) Photo by: Cactus Art
Agave potatorum cv. Kichijokan (young specimen) Photo by: Cactus Art
The degree of variegation is highly variable and depends also by levels of light, heat or feeding. Photo by: Cactus Art
This Agave is an outstanding container plant because of its smaller size, beautiful colour and regular proportions. Photo by: Cactus Art
Agave potatorum cv. Kichijokan Photo by: Valentino Vallicelli
A. potatorum ''kiji-jo-kan'' is a very unusual, rare coloured form with amazing symmetrical lotus like leaf pattern. Photo by: Valentino Vallicelli
Cultivation and Propagation: Agave potatorum is a relatively easy-to-grow species, though not as cold-hardy as many of the more northerly-occurring species (Winter hardy to around -3° C degrees) But it is best to protect it from frost to avoid disfiguring the foliage. Suited for light shade to full sun, but better with some shade in summer. It needs a very well-drained soil. It grows fairly fast in summer if provided with copious water, but allow to dry thoroughly before watering again (the more water and fertilizer this plant gets, the faster it will grow). During the winter months, one should only water enough to keep the leaves from shrivelling.
It does great in containers. Plants cultivated outdoors are more drought tolerant, and can take some heat and some sun. Remove eventual suckers to show of the beauty and form of the individual rosette.
Propagation: Relatively easy to propagate by suckers (if available) Remove the basal suckers in spring or summer and let the cuttings dry for a few days before inserting in compost.. only problem is the logistics of getting to the suckers - very sharp spines and suckers usually right up against, or underneath the mother plant.
Uses: These striking plants are wonderful when used for accent or simply to provide some all year round foliage colour and often used in a pot as a patio plant, they make an eye-catching statement and along with other evergreen plants in pots, can be moved around to change the scenery or position to give more shelter.
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