Mature Size of Blue Agave Plants
(Palo Alto, CA, USA)
Pruned Blue Agave Plants
I didn't see a place to ask a question about a succulent plant. I know that Blue Agave like a lot of sun and require little care but I am trying to find out how large they can get in circumference - how big a footprint to allow for a grown one.
All I can find online is how tall they get - and from the pictures it looks like they get taller than the radius gets wide because it looks like the side spikes droop a bit rather than sticking straight out full length. The reason this is important for where I want to plant them is that I'm interested in planting them along the easement between a busy street and a sidewalk.
The easement is only 5 feet across. So if I plant them in the middle, there will be room for them to grow about 2 and 1/2 feet on each side from the center without impacting the walkway or the drivers. And while I know that they won't be that big for a long time, I'm wondering whether it is a good place to plant them or not.
They shouldn't be too sensitive to the cars whizzing by either. It's the perfect solution unless they are going to have to be pulled out when they get too big - although that may not be my problem if I'm not still living here!Botanical Journeys Plant Guides
A mature Blue Agave plant
will certainly fill a 5 foot wide strip.
The trouble is, it might
grow just a bit wider than this in which case the tips of the leaves would be likely to come into contact with passers by.
In preparing to answer this question, I drove around and looked for the biggest Agave tequilana
plants I could find. I even found a couple of specimens planted near a sidewalk.
The homeowner had pruned the lower leaves off to keep them from encroaching on the walkway.
The pruning was done in a uniform fashion on both Tequila plants and it did not look messy. But when plants this large are handled in this way it declares, quite loudly, that you have planted them in the wrong place.
I would suggest that you use a smaller plant for this area. There are a variety of Yucca plants
that have that same spiky, architectural look and will stand up just as well to drought and pollution.
If you want a beautiful plant with glaucous leaves, consider the Blue Beaked Yucca rostrata
. It is every bit as striking as a Blue Agave
but will only grow to a width of about 4 feet.