Plant Database forum: Agave angustifolia 'Marginata'

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Name: Ron
Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
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rattlebox
Apr 27, 2014 11:29 AM CST
The current listing for Agave angustifolia should probably be modified to reflect the selected variety status of the variegated form. Though not generally available (or likely wanted, by comparison) the species is solid green.
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Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
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plantladylin
Apr 27, 2014 11:55 AM CST
I get really confused with species names sometimes. When I did a google search for A. angustifolia the only ones that came up were A. angustifolia var. 'Marginata' which I've heard some refer to as 'Variegata'. I never did find a solid green form.

Catalogue of Life shows angustifolia as a synonym for A. vivipara http://www.catalogueoflife.org/col/search/all/key/Agave+angu...

ATP database shows vivipara as the synonym: Agave (Agave angustifolia)
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Name: Ron
Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
Region: Florida Hummingbirder Butterflies Bromeliad Tropicals Foliage Fan
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rattlebox
Apr 27, 2014 2:13 PM CST
My understanding is that Agave vivipara is a separate species with a different growth form, but the name has been misapplied to Agave angustifolia, and is in that sense a synonym when referring to Agave angustifolia.

The blue-green form of Agave angustifolia (known as Maguey Espadin) is apparently the most commonly used Agave to make Mezcal. [Tequila, a specific type of mezcal, is only made from Agave tequiliana weber blue .] Search for Maguey Espadin and you'll find numerous pictures.

Generally the name Agave angustifolia is generally used as if synonymous with the variegated form, but there are numerous references that cite 'Marginata' as a cultivated variety of the species. It even appears that 'variegata' is similar to but visually distinct from 'Marginata'. From what I have read, 'Marginata' is by far the most common form in landscape use.

Some links:

http://books.google.com/books?id=SCqGyWNpRHwC&pg=PA564&lpg=P...

http://keyserver.lucidcentral.org/weeds/data/03030800-0b07-4...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agave_angustifolia

http://www.elginnursery.com/products.php?pid=8&detail=true

http://www.public.asu.edu/~camartin/plants/Plant%20html%20fi...

Still, I'm no expert. I'm only offering a suggestion based on my understanding from my research before adding it to my personal plant database some months ago. I wanted to post here so others could freely add their input.
[He] decided that if a few quiet beers wouldn't allow him to see things in a different light, then a few more probably would. - Terry Pratchett
[Last edited by rattlebox - Apr 30, 2014 3:37 AM (+)]
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Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Apr 27, 2014 2:44 PM CST

Plants Admin

This is a puzzling case. The major databases seem to agree to disagree, listing A. angustifolia as a synonym for A. vivipara and as a synonym for Furcraea tuberosa. In either case, the information in our database is incorrect because no major database recognizes A. angustifolia as an accepted species name. This will take more research.
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Apr 27, 2014 3:05 PM CST

Plants Admin

I've updated the entries for A. angustifolia and its subspecies to reflect the Catalogue of Life 2014 information for these plants as A. vivipara and its subspecies. According to the Catalogue of Life, A. angustifolia var. marginata and A. angustifolia var. variegata are synonyms for A. vivipara var. vivipara. I'm discounting the Furcraea references for now, because they contradict the A. vivipara references, but it is possible that these agaves eventually will be reclassified as Furcraea species and subspecies. The agave database here appears to have been based on some obsolete information, so I'll go through it today and update any entries that don't agree with the 2014 CoL data.
Name: Ron
Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
Region: Florida Hummingbirder Butterflies Bromeliad Tropicals Foliage Fan
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rattlebox
Apr 27, 2014 8:33 PM CST
Thanks. I'm comfortable with this as a current solution. I'll update my database to reflect this updated information.

I just checked The Plant List, and the data there has changed since I last accessed it, When I added this plant to my personal database a year or two ago, I had researched it fairly thoroughly, and 'Marginata' was simply a color form of A. angustifolia. I should have looked again, but in the back of my mind, I already "knew" what it said Times have changed.

I hate it when what we know is no longer true! In the future I'll check at least The Plant List and The Catalogue of Life before I open my mouth.

Thanks for digging into this can of worms I opened.
[He] decided that if a few quiet beers wouldn't allow him to see things in a different light, then a few more probably would. - Terry Pratchett
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Apr 27, 2014 11:25 PM CST

Plants Admin

Please check the Catalogue of Life first. Although The Plant List supposedly has been updated, the information there is still woefully obsolete in many cases.
Name: Ron
Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
Region: Florida Hummingbirder Butterflies Bromeliad Tropicals Foliage Fan
Plant and/or Seed Trader Xeriscape Seed Starter The WITWIT Badge Garden Ideas: Level 1 Plant Identifier
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rattlebox
Apr 28, 2014 8:03 AM CST
Good to know!
[He] decided that if a few quiet beers wouldn't allow him to see things in a different light, then a few more probably would. - Terry Pratchett
Name: Ron
Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
Region: Florida Hummingbirder Butterflies Bromeliad Tropicals Foliage Fan
Plant and/or Seed Trader Xeriscape Seed Starter The WITWIT Badge Garden Ideas: Level 1 Plant Identifier
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rattlebox
Apr 29, 2014 7:01 PM CST
@Zuzu,

This is curious.

I was just looking at the Catalogue of Life entry for Agave angustifolia and it shows A. angustifolia as a synonym for A. vivipara, as you have already mentioned above:
http://www.catalogueoflife.org/col/search/all/key/agave+angu...

The Catalogue of Life gives KEW World Checklist of Selected Plant Families as the source database.

But when I go to KEW WCSP, that database lists Agave angustifolia as an =accepted= name:
http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/qsearch.do;jsessionid=EAFCC6040071C...

Furthermore, KEW WCSP also lists Agave vivipara as an accepted name:
http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/qsearch.do;jsessionid=1BAECCED11E51...

Furcraea tuberosa is also listed as an accepted name, but with no reference to Agave angustifolia or A. vivipara:
http://apps.kew.org/wcsp/qsearch.do;jsessionid=1BAECCED11E51...

And here I thought this was temporarily settled. Blinking

Ron
[He] decided that if a few quiet beers wouldn't allow him to see things in a different light, then a few more probably would. - Terry Pratchett
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Region: California Cat Lover Roses
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zuzu
Apr 29, 2014 7:15 PM CST

Plants Admin

The problem with checking Kew is that we have no idea when that information was updated. The most recent date on their A. angustifolia entry is 1812. The most recent date on the CoL entry, on the other hand, is April 28, 2014 -- in other words, yesterday.

http://www.catalogueoflife.org/col/search/all/key/agave+angu...
Name: Ron
Naples, Florida (Zone 10a)
Region: Florida Hummingbirder Butterflies Bromeliad Tropicals Foliage Fan
Plant and/or Seed Trader Xeriscape Seed Starter The WITWIT Badge Garden Ideas: Level 1 Plant Identifier
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rattlebox
Apr 29, 2014 10:43 PM CST
[post deleted by me]
[He] decided that if a few quiet beers wouldn't allow him to see things in a different light, then a few more probably would. - Terry Pratchett
[Last edited by rattlebox - May 20, 2014 6:32 PM (+)]
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Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Region: California Cat Lover Roses
Clematis Irises Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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zuzu
Nov 18, 2014 7:14 PM CST

Plants Admin

In case anyone is still following this old thread and this old controversy, I can report that there has been another change: A. angustifolia and A. vivipara are now acknowledged by the COL to be two separate species. Both names are now acceptable species names. This will take a little tinkering with the Agave section of the database, but I'll finish it up sometime tonight.

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