Agave lechuguilla

Agave, Lechuguilla Agave, Shin Dagger

About This Plant

Full sun. Evergreen. Thick yellow-green rosettes are tipped with hard, sharp spines that easily pierce rubber, leather and skin. Lechuguilla grows in spreading colonies. It’s been used to provide easy erosion control on steep slopes (see it in San Antonio on the shoulders of US 281 alongside the Sunken Gardens). You won’t be able to do much gardening around it, but if you have deer and thin limestone soil, it makes a nice barrier.

Origins: Chihuahuan Desert; a Texas native.


Prune to remove dead, top-heavy or excess growth. Pups can be extracted with a shovel. Heavy gloves, a long-handled shovel and pruners will be needed. Avoid adding it to compost, since the hard thorns don’t break down.

A tough, fierce agave great for erosion control.

Min. Height: 1'

Max Height: 2 feet'

Min. Width: 2'

Max Width: 3 feet'

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