In my mind this should be the name of the first succulent superhero … say it: man-GAHV-eh! It just sounds mighty, doesn’t it? I bought this mangave from Jeff Moore of Solana Succulents in Solana Beach (original post here) in April, 2010. Then, it was much smaller and darker overall. A’bloodspot’ variety, it more than lived up to its name with dark green leaves flecked with drops a deep sanguine red. A year-and-a-half later, and it’s grown to 3 times its original size and changed color: the outside lower leaves still look as they did then, but moving to the plant’s center they’ve become lighter, less speckled and a cool, pale blue-green … Plus, there’s a stalk now! Almost 10-inches tall, and shell-pink, the flower stalk appeared seemingly overnight … I mean, I was home all weekend, working in the garden most of that time and never noticed it until Paul pointed it out late Sunday afternoon after returning from Chicago …
Here’s a closer look at the bloody spotting on the mangave‘s darker, outer leaves. And, take a look at how the spots have become more purple than blood-red as they move toward the plant’s core. I love how this new hue seems a better match for the blue-green core. It’s different, but still lovely.
Wednesday was the first full-on rain of the season and I couldn’t wait to get home to take these pictures; I love my garden best after a rain. While taking these mangave shots, I realized that another prized plant from that Solana Beach shopping trip, a large furcrea mcdougalii, was planted right next to it. This furcrea has also grown considerably since its purchase; its form adding a terrific vertical presence with long, subtly curving leaves. Both are super examples of succulent beauty and I love knowing that each came to me from the same source.