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 Agave striata vs. Agave stricta 
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Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2007 4:06 pm
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Post Agave striata vs. Agave stricta
An Australian horticulturalist drew my attention to this very clear blog article.

It can be summarised, for horticultural purposes, as "impossible to tell apart except when in flower". Both spp. are variable in habit, leaf-form and size and the only way to tell them definitively apart is by measurements of the flowering parts.

Out of flower, the variations between individual plants of A. striata and A. stricta are greater than the differences between the spp. No wonder people get into circular debates about them.

I wonder if A. stricta shares any of A. striata's inexplicable hardiness.

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Sun Mar 05, 2017 11:21 am
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Post Re: Agave striata vs. Agave stricta
There is one easy way to tell the difference - go to Mexico! Agave striata is common throughout the NE, Agave stricta is not very common in the Tehuacan Valley, several hundred km further south.

In cultivation I find it almost impossible to distinguish between the two as all the parameters that allegedly tell the two apart can vary and therefore overlap. I have several 'bought as' striata planted outside that have been fine over the years - I lost one plant a long while ago but all the rest do ok and one is now a regular flowerer (and confirmed as striata). I also have one plant that I feel is different enough to key out as stricta, which is the name it came with, but that has also proved to be hardy over many years despite the frost-free provenance.

Bottom line - unless you are 100% confident about the provenance of the seed your plant was raised from I would always have it down with a question mark.

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Sun Mar 05, 2017 12:15 pm
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Post Re: Agave striata vs. Agave stricta
Well, thank the gods it's not just me.

I bought a juvenile plant some thirty years ago and despite much research have never been able to be sure if it is striata or stricta. The pity is that if I have to wait for it to flower to make sure it'll already be on its last legs!

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Sun Mar 05, 2017 3:23 pm
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Post Re: Agave striata vs. Agave stricta
Blimey Keith loving your botanic garden of a greenhouse I guess you heat that?


Sun Mar 05, 2017 8:01 pm
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Post Re: Agave striata vs. Agave stricta
Kev, yes, I keep it frost free.

The problem is t's a very modest 10ft x 8ft and the plants are beginning to threaten the roof.

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Sun Mar 05, 2017 8:47 pm
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Post Re: Agave striata vs. Agave stricta
I know that problem mine are 10ft x 6ft and after a few years things have to be planted out.


Sun Mar 05, 2017 9:00 pm
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Post Re: Agave striata vs. Agave stricta
I got both striata and stricta , 1 year old seedlings survived -8 C with rain protection. Stricta nana however is not hardy. Striata subsp falcata is pretty hardy. Striata rubra is actually quitte hardy as well. Alot of agave and cacti from San Luis Potosi are quitte cold hardy, striata is very widespread.


Mon Mar 20, 2017 5:01 pm
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Post Re: Agave striata vs. Agave stricta
Further to my previous post, I've just seen that my stricta/striata is coming into flower.

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Fri Aug 18, 2017 6:17 pm
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Post Re: Agave striata vs. Agave stricta
I get Agave stricta here from Mexico. It was a souvernir. On the picture you see them in habitat.


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Sat Aug 26, 2017 12:01 pm
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Post Re: Agave striata vs. Agave stricta
Update on my stricta/striata.

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Tue Aug 29, 2017 5:08 pm
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Post Re: Agave striata vs. Agave stricta
Further update on my Stricta/Striata? The flower isn't what I was expecting at all. Green flowers with flesh coloured anthers turning to yellow and then off white.

The pity is the flower found its way out of the door while I was away and I'll have to remove it before the first frosts so that I can keep the heat in the greenhouse.

Now that its flowering hopefully someone can give a positive identification for this Agave.

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Sat Oct 14, 2017 1:18 pm
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Post Re: Agave striata vs. Agave stricta
Agave striata. Or, perhaps, the flowers and inflorescence are exactly like my plant that I believe to be Agave striata :)

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Sat Oct 14, 2017 2:29 pm
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Post Re: Agave striata vs. Agave stricta
Paul Spracklin wrote:
Agave striata. Or, perhaps, the flowers and inflorescence are exactly like my plant that I believe to be Agave striata :)


LOL! Thanks very much Paul.

BTW, what are the chances of the plant offsetting after flowering. Is it worth keeping?

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Sat Oct 14, 2017 4:25 pm
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Post Re: Agave striata vs. Agave stricta
This is one that offsets in the leaf axils so effectively making a clump eventually. Mine has flowered 3 times now from various heads within the cluster. The remains of the original rosette die off eventually but can easily be pulled off.

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Sat Oct 14, 2017 4:34 pm
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Post Re: Agave striata vs. Agave stricta
Paul:

I am a bit surprised that you believe that this is a striata and this underscores the difficulty in separating them based on vegetative characters alone. I have grown plenty of Tehuacan-origin strictas and I wouldn't have hesitated to ID this plant as one if it weren't for your comments. IME, stricta commonly produces dense, spherical masses like this one, and offset from well within the rosette at/after flowering, not basally as they normally do prior to flowering in striata, part. var. falcata. I believe, however, that floral metrics remain the only way to differentiate the two spp with any certainty.

Keith, based on my experience with this sp., your plant should produce a number of offsets in the upper regions of the rosette as the stalk senesces. They are essentially impossible to separate as viable offsets until very well-developed and this will involve breaking up the mother plant and lots of (your) blood. Stalk will dry woody and require a hacksaw or heavy-duty branch pruner to take out if left on for too long. Alternately, you can follow Paul's reco and let the original plant decay over time and pull out the dead bits piecemeal as they come loose.

Others...please note, there are red/purple populations of all the taxa discussed here. Unless you know origin for certain, very difficult to ID youngsters. Little argument that var. falcata is very, very freeze hardy if kept dryish.

Jay

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Tue Oct 17, 2017 6:27 pm
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