Agave Edema on Agave attenuata at Lotusland in late summer 2004.
Several times over the last 10 years local garden professionals have noted the blotchy damage to the leaves of Agave attenuata and Agave attenuata 'Nova'. This damage seems to ocurr after periods of overcast humid conditions, which are common in Santa Barbara in the early summer months of summer or as weather shifts rapidly from the dry warm days of fall into our cooler wet fall winter pattern. There is speculation that the cause of this physiological damage, refered to as edema (oedema), is changes in weather. In 1996 the occurance of this disease was so widespread on Santa Barbara's ubiquouis Fox tail Agave (Agave attenuata) that gardeners all over town were commenting on it. Pest Control Advisor Robert Muraoka wrote about this occurance in his Spring 1997 issue of "Santa Barbara Garden News" calling the article Oedema Damage on Agave.