‘Lipstick’ Agavoides or Molded wax Agave
Loved by indoor succulent growers, Echeveria agavoides is instantly recognizable by its chubby, triangular leaves of pale green with outer edges tinged with pink or red that grow tightly packed together to form a glorious rosette.
Position Full sun or partial shade
Watering Water thoroughly but infrequently
Size 12 inches tall with rosette diameter of up to 8 inches
Climate Not cold hardy Zone 9a (Minimum 20° F | -6.7° C)
Propagate Offsets and leaves
Seasonality Evergreen, winter dormant
Toxicity Non toxic
Flowers Red, lantern-shaped flowers with yellow tips from Spring
Also known as ‘Lipstick’ Agavoides or Molded Wax Agave, the rosettes of Echeveria agavoides grow individually from a central spine and can reach a diameter of up to 8 inches. These succulents make an attractive addition to any indoor collection or outdoor rock garden but are not suitable as ground coverage as they do not grow in clumps.
Similar to most other Echeveria, this succulent plant flowers in spring to early summer with an impressive display of lantern-shaped flowers of vibrant red that are edged with yellow. These appear on stalks from the centre of the rosette and are attractive to pollinators.
Echeveria agavoides is native to Mexico and it’s fair to say that an impressive array of cultivators have been produced from the original. All have the distinctive triangular-shaped leaves of green that are edged with red or pink but often in either more vivid or subtle shades.
Some of my favorites include Echeveria agavoides ‘Ebony’, ‘x Pulidonis’, ‘Prolifera’, and ‘Aquamarine’. All of them are relatively straightforward to grow providing you stick to some basic principles so it’s easy to see how enthusiasts can create beautiful collections and arrangements from them.
Here below, are all the tips and tricks to need to know for your own successful Echeveria agavoides collection.
Echeveria Agavoides Care
Echeveria agavoides is an evergreen succulent, native to Mexico. It does well in pots, containers, sunny borders, or rock gardens.
This plant really does not tolerate wet or cold weather and so for climates with temperatures any lower than 20° F, it’s best grown in containers that can easily be brought indoors.
Position in a sunny spot that gets a good deal of sunlight throughout the day. Echeveria agavoides is fairly robust and can even thrive in shallow soil.
A good indoor position is a south-facing, draft-free windowsill. Be sure to move them indoors before any sizable dip in temperature.
Expect the rosettes of a looked-after Echeveria agavoides to grow up to up to 12 inches tall with a rosette diameter of up to 8 inches. This is a solitary plant of just one impressive rosette and so is not suitable as ground cover and will not grow in clumps, unlike some other Echeveria agavoides cultivators.
Echeveria agavoides is no different to most other succulent plants. It much prefers dry roots and does not like to be kept in damp soil.
The key to watering success is to give your plant a good soak using a long-spouted watering can. This will help to direct the water directly to the soil rather than the leaves and monitor the amount of water you need. You need to keep pouring until the water runs freely through the drainage holes at the bottom of the pot or container – and then allow the soil to dry completely before watering again.
Test the dryness of the soil by pressing your finger deep into the soil. Alternatively, prod the soil around the drainage holes in the bottom of the pot. If the soil feels completely dry, it’s time to water your plant.
Echeveria agavoides roots do not like damp soil. The best way to avoid this is to always use well-draining succulent or cacti soil. This will help keep roots healthy and is one way of preventing root rot.
Use soil that is peat-free or contains coconut coir and is mixed with minerals such as grit, sand, or perlite. It can be made at home by mixing two-thirds of minerals such as grit, sand, and perlite, and one-third of organic matter, such as a good quality peat-free compost or coconut coir.
If you don’t have time for mixing your own, use a ready-mixed succulent and cacti soil. There are many brands to choose from either by purchasing online or at any decent garden-supply retailer.
Expect to see an impressive display of bright red, lantern-shaped blooms with yellow edging in late spring to early summer. These flowers appear on stalks that stand proud of the rosette and are attractive to pollinators.
It is fine to fertilize just once during the summertime growing season using a heavily diluted liquid feed however, Echeveria agavoides will grow perfectly well without additional nutrients.
Echeveria agavoides is a slow-growing succulent and leaves tend to remain on it for a long time. Pruning shouldn’t really be necessary unless you need to tidy up any damaged, discolored, or dead leaves, in which case, it’s fine to simply peel them off.
Cut back any flower stems once they are past their best using a sharp and sterile knife or scissors. Try to avoid accidentally snipping other leaves if you are using a tool.
Since Echeveria agavoides is a slow-growing succulent that will do well even in a small or shallow pot, you will not need to re-pot this plant very often. In fact, every 2-3 years will suffice.
When you do re-pot, choose a suitably sized succulent pot and always use fresh soil. Hold off watering for 3-5 days to make sure the soil is dry, then give it a good soak and resume its usual watering schedule.
Early spring is the best time, before the start of the growing season and before flowering.
Have a good look at the condition of the roots when your plant is out of its pot for any signs of rot. If you do notice any wet and slimy, dark brown or black areas on the roots, gently trim them off with a sharp sterile knife or scissors. Allow the cuts to dry before repotting.
How to Propagate Echeveria Agavoides
Echeveria Agavoides is easy to propagate from either leaves or offsets although growth may be slower than with other succulents.
Select a healthy leaf and take care to remove the entire leaf from the stem. Do this by holding the leaf between the thumb and forefinger as near to the stem as possible and peeling it back using a firm motion. Give it a gentle but confident twist to ensure the leaf remains intact. Damaged leaves are less likely to be successful in propagation.
Place the leaf on kitchen paper and allow it to callous off for a couple of days in a sunny, draft-free position.
Once dry, lay the leaf on well-draining succulent or cactus soil. Water only when the soil is completely dry. Rooting is likely to take several weeks and certainly longer than with other methods.
Remove offsets from the base of your Echeveria Agavoides plant simply by picking them off. Allow them to callous off for a day or so before placing the offset on well-draining soil. Water only when the soil is completely dry.
Common problems with Echeveria Agavoides
The biggest problem facing any Echeveria plant is an owner with an overzealous habit of watering.
The leaves of an over-watered Echeveria agavoides will look soggy, mushy, and brown or yellow in color. The soil will almost certainly feel damp or wet to the touch.
To revive an overwatered Echeveria agavoides remove it from its pot and allow it to dry out for a few days. Trim away any dead leaves and check the condition of the roots for any brown or black areas. These will need to be trimmed away too.
Once dry, replant in a clean container or pot with drainage holes at the bottom, and always use fresh, well-draining succulent or cacti soil. You can also cover the top of the soil with a layer of grit for extra drainage.
Root Rot is another common problem for this succulent. It typically occurs from overwatering or allowing the soil to remain wet over a prolonged period of time.
If you have removed your Echeveria agavoides to dry it out because it has rotting leaves, now is a good time to check for signs of root rot.
Once removed from the pot carefully brush off any remaining soil from around the roots of your plant. Roots that are brown or black and soft and mushy are rotten and need trimming off. Allow the cut to dry before repotting with fresh soil in a clean pot. Water thoroughly, but less frequently.
An under-watered Echeveria agavoides will have leaves that look deflated and may also turn brown or drop off. You may also start to notice a decline in growth or even no growth at all. Check the lightness of the pot. It may feel lighter than usual and the soil will be hard. Give your plant a good soak to allow it time to recover.
Avoid using a spray bottle or mister when watering succulents. This is because any prolonged periods of wetness on the leaves can lead to leaf rot, disease and may also encourage pests. In addition, the roots of your succulent will not get the required amount of water they need to hydrate.
Another common problem for Echeveria agavoides are Mealybugs, especially if grown indoors and not kept as dry as possible.
These tiny wingless insects are often a result of humid or damp conditions. They hide out in crevices and leaf junctions where water can collect.
Mealybugs are tiny white dots that produce a distinctive cotton-like mass on the plant’s surface. They feed on the plant’s sap by piecing their straw-like mouth into the foliage.
Firstly, move the infected plant away from any other plants and then remove excess water and any visible Mealybugs from your plant using a cotton bud.
Use a household insect spray, neem oil, detergent or soapy water to wash them away. Repeat regularly until the infestation subsides.