Agave sisalana ‘Mediopicta’

sisal hemp agave
Source of sisal fiber; stiff and narrow spine-tip leaves with medial stripe form elegant rosette. Consistent suckers.
height 4–6ft
width 6–8ft
tolerates Drought, Deer , Heat
Agave plants are extremely drought tolerant, and this one needs no supplemental irrigation in coastal California. It will, however, look better and grow faster if given additional water, especially during summer.
exposure Part Shade – Full Sun
drainage In Ground: Cactus Mix, In Pots: Cactus Mix, Tolerates Sandy Soil
origin Mexico
13, 15–24

Sunset Zones Map

Outdoor Exposure Guide


Full Sun
Six or more hours of sun beams directly landing on the plant's leaves.

Part Shade
Three to five hours of sun beams directly landing on the plant's leaves.

Part Sun
One to two hours of sun beams directly landing on the plants leaves.

Full Shade
The plant is never fully lit by sun beams, but is in a bright spot or has dappled sunbeams playing over the leaves throughout the day.

Deep Shade
The plant never has dappled light on the leaves, and is in a place that feels dim, even on a nice sunny day.


Growing Notes

Like most agave the plant is monocarpic, meaning that a head will grow larger and larger over time, building up energy, then send off a spectacular flower, after which they decline and die. With pupping varieties, like this one, they grow from stolons and rhizomes at the base, constantly replacing the older bloomed-out heads with new ones, which then grow larger and flower, continuing the life cycle.
Take care when pruning or removing agaves, as many have a toxic sap that causes inflammation and rashing. Removing spent agave heads can also be tricky as they are often ringed with other armed agaves. If you like the look of agaves, but are threatened by the terminal spikes, they can be removed. It’s easiest to cut these off when they are coming out of the rosette as you’ll be able to prune the thorns off many layers of leaves at one time.
You can ‘pineapple’ your agave by removing the lowest leaves. This is best started while it is out of the nursery can, but before planting, when you can access leaves from the bottom. This gives the plant a short trunk, textured similar to many palms, and allows you to get under the plant for weeding or removing pups.
While this agave will do surprisingly well in a pot, smaller agave are generally a better choice.

Special Interest

Fifteen to twenty foot flower spike at end of life ends covered in bulbils that can be replanted.