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Products > Agave 'Sawtooth'
Agave 'Sawtooth'

Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Succulent
Family: Agavaceae (now Asparagaceae)
Origin: Mexico (North America)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Yellow
Bloomtime: Infrequent
Synonyms: [A. franzosinii, Hort.]
Height: 6-8 feet
Width: 8-10 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 15-20 F
May be Poisonous  (More Info): Yes
Agave 'Sawtooth' - A large succulent that grows to 6 to 8 feet tall by 8 to 10 feet wide as a single large rosette of powdery bluish-gray large leaves that undulate and bend gracefully. Plant in full sun and give little to occasional irrigation. This plant is fairly similar to Agave franzosinii, and in fact it has been sold under this name by other California nurseries. It differs in not being quite as massive and having narrower leaves that are not as ghostly white as A. franzosinii. It also has much smaller, more evenly spaced, teeth along the leaf margins and lacks the dark green bud markings typical of A. franzosinii, where the glaucous covering is rubbed off the emerging leaves from contact with older leaves. See our listing of Agave franzosinii for comparison. 'Sawtooth' is a very attractive large plant that has long been in cultivation in California and thought it as cold hardy as Agave americana, but have been told by those growing this plant in Tucson that it is not as hardy as Agave franzosinii and will be damaged at temperatures around 15 F. We received this plant in the late 1980s from John Greenlee and the original plant in our garden has flowered several times over about 15 year intervals, but each time pupped from near the previous plant to begin anew. Over the years we have asked numerous people what to call this plant, and, while many noted its similarities to Agave franzosinii, we lacked a name until seeing the plant in 2008 at B&B Cactus Farm labeled as Agave 'Sawtooth'. We inquired about this with owner Mark Sitter and it turned out that he had purchased it as Agave franzosinii but coined the name 'Sawtooth' when he realized it was not this species. We think this a great name for this Agave franzosinii imposter still a nice and useful plant that is a tad smaller, but quite different from that big ghostly plant. At the Ruth Bancroft Garden another similar plants has long been identified as Agave rasconensis, which is often listed as a synonym for Agave americana ssp. americana.  Information on this page is based on research conducted in our nursery library, from online sources, as well as from observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in the nursery's garden and in other gardens where we have observed it. We also will incorporate comments received from others and welcome getting feedback of any kind from those who have additional information, particularly if this information is contrary to what we have written or includes additional cultural tips would aid others in growing Agave 'Sawtooth'.