The Angel Awakens

Several years ago, plantsman Hans Hansen shared an Agave ovatifolia mutation he’d found. This unusual sport shared a trait of many hosta, viridescence. This occurs in both gold and variegated hostas which are brighter in spring, but age to green. Such is the case with Agave ovatifolia ‘Awakening Angel’. We had a theory that this might make this one of the few variegated century plants to not loose winter hardiness by being variegated. Hosta foliage produces sugars, which is the plants antifreeze. Typically, variegated leaf tissue produces little to no sugars, so it the first to melt when winter temperatures drop below 20 degrees F.

In this case, our theory was that the leaf layers were stacked, allowing the variegated to show in spring, but by fall, most of the color has aged back to pure blue for the winter. The last two winters dropped to 11F, and 18F respectively, allowing us to test our hypothesis. Indeed, the plant performed as we suspected with no winter damage.

Agave ovatifolia ‘Awakening Angel’

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