Octopus agave gets its name from its rubbery and twisting foliage character. It is a bold agave species, growing 5-6 ft. tall and as wide that develops long and flexible trough-shaped foliage. Leaves are pale green with soft pointed tips. Plants can mature and flower in as few as 5-6 years, producing striking 12-16 ft. tall spikes covered with showy pale yellow flowers that unfold over 6-8 weeks. Like many agave species, the flowering plant dies after flowering but produces many small plantlets on the flower stalk that can be easily planted. Damaged by cold below 25°F.
Octopus agave is widely distributed throughout Mexico where it grows on volcanic cliffs and steep rocky slopes. It has evolved without the need for protective spines necessary to ward off wildlife browsing. Its soft foliage has helped make it a popular landscape and garden plant that is widely grown throughout frost free zones of the Inland Empire. It provides specimen and sculptural uses in containers and for mass plantings.