Ruth Bancroft Garden Agave Sharkskin Shoes (Agave nickelsiae x A. asperrima)
Ruth Bancroft Garden Agave Sharkskin Shoes (Agave nickelsiae x A. asperrima).
During the garden tour at the Ruth Bancroft Garden we saw some amazing specimans of the hybrid between Agave nickelsiae, a plant often described as the king form of Agave victoriae-reginae and once called A. ferdinandi-regis, and Agave asperrima, a plant previously called Agave scabra. This plant, sometimes called Sharkskin Agave is amazing. This structural plant grows to 3 feet tall with evenly spaced thick triangular dark gray-green leaves that have smooth margins and prominent sturdy terminal spines. This agave suckers to produce colonies of this beautiful plant. There have been several collections made of plants with this parentage over the years. The Huntington Botanic Garden has this a plant labled as Agave victoriae-reginae x scabra (HBG28048) that was collected by Myron Kimnach & Gary Lyons on May 21, 1971 in Coahuila, Mexico but there are also references that have listed this plant as a Charlie Glass and Bob Foster introduction so likely they too made a collection of it. The collection from Huntington Gardens has generally been referred to as 'Sharkskin' but the form at the Ruth Bancroft Garden is slightly more upright. This plant when first released from a micropropagation laboratory was called Agave 'Ruth Bancroft' but this name was confusing and not supported by Brian Kemble who noted that there is another Agave introduced by the garden that already goes by this name. The name 'Sharkskin Shoes' was finally settled on to identify this beautiful plant. See our more information and additional pictures in our database listing Agave 'Sharkskin Shoes'
Agave vicotoriae-reginae x Agave lechuguilla in the Ruth Bancroft Garden.
Another interesting and beautiful hybrid at the Ruth Bancroft Garden was a Agave victoria-reginae crossed with Agave lechuguilla. Interestingly this same cross was noted and collected by Myron Kimnach and Gary Lyon when they collected the nickelsiae x Agave asperrima cross (HBG28048) noted above.