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  for JULY

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Products > Echeveria agavoides 'Maria'
Echeveria agavoides 'Maria' - Maria Wax Agave
Image of Echeveria agavoides 'Maria'
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Succulent
Family: Crassulaceae (Stonecrops)
Origin: Mexico (North America)
Evergreen: Yes
Red/Purple Foliage: Yes
Flower Color: Red & Yellow
Bloomtime: Spring/Summer
Parentage: (E. agavoides x E. agavoides 'Prolifera')
Height: 1 foot
Width: 1-2 feet
Exposure: Sun or Shade
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 10-15° F
Echeveria agavoides 'Maria' (Maria Wax Agave) - This succulent cultivar forms a large 14+ inch wide tight rosettes of fleshy, apple-green leaves that have reddish pink edges most pronounced toward the dark red terminal spine. In spring and early summer appear the red with yellow tips on in cymes on 18 to 24 inch long simple or few branched inflorescences.

Best planted in a well-drained soil in a bright light or full sun (coastal) but will take considerable shade. Irrigate infrequently to occasionally. Cold hardy to about 14° F. This is a great plant in pots, a pathway edging or in a rock garden.

The genus Echeveria is a member of the large Crassula family (Crassulaceae), which has about 1,400 species in 33 genera with worldwide distribution. Echeveria, with approximately 180 species, are native to mid to higher elevations in the Americas with the main distribution in Mexico and central America but with one species found from as far north as southern Texas and several species occurring as far south as Bolivia, Peru and possibly Argentina. The book "The genus Echeveria" by John Pilbeam (published by the British Cactus and Succulent Society, 2008) is an excellent source of information on the species and "Echeveria Cultivars" by Lorraine Schulz (AKA Rudolf Schulz) and Attila Kapitany (Schulz Publishing, 2005) has beautiful photos and great information on the cultivars and hybrids. It has been argued by some that the correct pronunciation for the genus is ek-e-ve'-ri-a, though ech-e-ver'-i-a seems in more prevalent use in the US.

Echeveria agavoides is an extremely variable species that has leaves that range from almost entirely green to those that are pink and with some that have deep red markings along the leaf margins. The species generally inhabits rocky canyons and arid hillsides of Central Mexico and found in the states of Aguascalientes, Durango, Guanajuato, Hidalgo, Jalisco, Querétaro, San Luis Potosí and Zacatecas, though there are reports of it being found as far north as Coahuila and as far south as Oaxaca. The genus was named to honor Mexican botanical artist Atanasio Echeverría y Godoy in 1828 by the French botanist Augustin Pyramus de Candolle (DeCandolle) who was very impressed with Echeverría's drawings. Echeverría had accompanied the the Sessé and Mociño expedition (led by Martin de Sessé y Lacasta and Mariano Mociño Suárez de Figueroa) while exploring Mexico and northern Central America and had produced thousands of botanical illustrations. The specific epithet means "looking like an agave" in reference to this species narrow triangular leaves that are more acutely tipped than others in the genus. This resemblance also gives this species one of its alternate common names, Molded Wax Agave. It is also called Molded Wax, Molded Wax Plant, Wax Agave, Wax Echeveria and Carpet Echeveria.

This large Echeveria agavoides cultivar was selected by Frank Reinelt (1900-1979) from crosses he made between Echeveria agavoides and E. agavoides 'Prolifera'. It is notable for its large size, red leaf tips and cold hardiness - reportedly tolerating to 14° F or less. Mr. Reinelt, who operated Vetterle and Reinelt Nursery in Capitola, California and was once called the "Dean of Plant Breeders", was more famous for his primrose, begonia and delphiniums but also worked with succulent plants. This plant was distributed by the International Succulent Introduction as ISI# 92-45 from cuttings taken from plants at the Huntington Botanic Gardens (HBG #71216). We have grown this great cultivar at San Marcos Growers since 1997. This plant is highly sought after by international buyers which has led us to exclaim "how do you solve a problem like Maria!". 

This information about Echeveria agavoides 'Maria' displayed is based on research conducted in our horticultural library and from reliable online resources. We also will relate observations made about it as it grows in our nursery gardens and other gardens we have visited, as well how the crops have performed in containers in our nursery field. We will also incorporate comments that we receive from others and we welcome hearing from anyone with additional information, particularly if they can share any cultural information that would aid others in growing it.