Ask a Question forum→Mystery Agave(?) Identification and removal help

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California
HeatherQuinn
May 1, 2020 10:30 PM CST
I'm looking for help identifying this plant and advice on how to safely remove it. It has spiky leaves and takes up alot of space in my small yard so my toddlers always running in to it. It's looked pretty rough since we moved in two years ago so I'm not even sure what it would look like healthy! I think it's some kind of agave but can't pinpoint what kind. There's alot of separate pups but I can't tell how many and I'm worried about getting in there and damaging them since everything looks so tangled! I'd like to give the pups away and keep one in a pot if it would be ok that way. Any advice on care and removal?
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Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
Cactus and Succulents Seed Starter Foliage Fan Xeriscape Container Gardener Hummingbirder
Native Plants and Wildflowers Garden Photography Region: Mexico Plant Identifier Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator
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Baja_Costero
May 1, 2020 11:13 PM CST
Wear gloves, use long handled tools, and take your time. Agave spines can cause pain but they can also cause a pretty annoying irritation (inflammatory reaction) afterwards. You might try to lift up the leaves and work around the edges beneath them. The more you can work from underneath, the fewer spines will be pointed in your direction. You might want to hack one or more of them back (ie. cut off all the leaves in your way) in order to safely get at the others, ie. make a sacrifice to improve your access to the pups you're trying to remove.

You don't need to get any roots to speak of. These plants will re-root quickly and easily. So you might try to use a pointy ended shovel and work around the edges, just hack off most of the roots, and pop the desired offsets up from underneath.

Welcome!
[Last edited by Baja_Costero - May 1, 2020 11:14 PM (+)]
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Southwest U.S. (Zone 7a)
MsDoe
May 2, 2020 10:52 AM CST
Is that a spathe and spadix flower? Doesn't look right for an agave?
Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
Cactus and Succulents Seed Starter Foliage Fan Xeriscape Container Gardener Hummingbirder
Native Plants and Wildflowers Garden Photography Region: Mexico Plant Identifier Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator
Image
Baja_Costero
May 2, 2020 10:57 AM CST
No, that's just the central bud from which all the leaves come. It's an agave.
Southwest U.S. (Zone 7a)
MsDoe
May 2, 2020 11:05 AM CST
OK, I see it now, thank you!

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