AGAVES have dry pale brown spots on their leaves which have remained
unchanged through summer. I first noticed them in spring and the
new leaves growing seem to be fine. Have you any idea of the pest
that has caused these unsightly blemishes?
MOST probable cause of this type of damage is hail. While many succulents,
including your agaves (Agave attenuata) appear to be tough
plants, a heavy shower of hail can puncture the leaf surface resulting
in small scars that remain visible for the life of that leaf.
You may not even have
been aware of the hail, as it could have occurred at night.
I'm sorry, but there's
nothing you can do apart from cutting off any particularly bad-looking
leaves close to the main stem.
If the plant is growing
well new leaves should soon sprout and eventually hide the damaged
Gardener, Issue 140, 2004, Page 27
Reproduced with permission from the former Weekend Gardener magazine. The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the RNZIH.