Agave pelona is an incredible plant that only occurs in three small mountain ranges of extremely arid northwestern Sonora, Mexico. The species name, pelona, is drawn from the Spanish word pelon, meaning bald, a reference to the lack of teeth along the leaf edges. The mescalero who first took Howard Scott Gentry to these plants called them “mescal pelon”, and said they produced a sweet “mescal”, but the heads were too small to be of any real economic value.
A nice grouping of plants in various stages of flowering.
The plants grow only on the steep sides and tops of ridges composed of large, sharp-edged limestone blocks of rock. Some associated plants include Fouquieria splendens, Bursera microphylla and Dasylirion wheeleri. In late April or May, when the conditions are right, the plant will send up a spike-like stalk that rises 6-10 feet high, rarely a little more,that is tightly packed with intense, deep red flowers. What the right conditions are, only the plants know for sure!
Showing off its multi-colored leaves with the striking purplish red decorating the leaf ends.
Colorful leaves with smooth edges and long terminal spines.
The large, red, bell-shaped flowers are unbeatable!