Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Agave attenuata sunburn

Sunburn on Agave attenuata
Fleshy leaved agaves often suffer burnt leaves following prolonged cloudy wet weather. The upward facing leaves become soft and full of water during rainy periods and are unable to cope with the effects of returning strong sunlight. They usually take some months to recover from this phenomenon during which time many people discard them thinking they will never improve in appearance. It's just one of those weather related things over which we have no control. Agave attenuata will tolerate some shade so the problem can be minimized to some extent though growth in shade tends to be lax and not as robust.
The comment below by reader Craig puts it much more succinctly than I. Thanks Craig

1 comment:

  1. Hi Ian, have noticed this on all Agave attenuata down the coast, whether in shade or sun. My research into the never before seen (by me) problem turned up 'Agave oedema' from San Marcos Growers in the US from a decade or two ago. The weather ahs been hot and dry, day and night. Then we got 300mm rain in a few days. Weather turned from wet and warm in the day allowing the plant's roots to continue sucking the water up, to cool and moist at night, and so not allowing the water to be transpired. The result is that the plant cells just rupture causing the blistering on the leaves. Only cure for the disfigurement is time, to overgrow new leaves. Hope this doesn't happen on a more regular basis. Regards Craig