Scientific: Agave macroacantha 
Common: no common name
Family: Asparagaceae (subfamily Agavoideae)
Origin: Semi-tropical climates of central Mexico, Tehuacan-Cuicatlan, Oaxaca and Pueblo regions

Pronounciation: A-GA-ve ma-crow-a-CAN-tha

Hardiness zones:
Sunset 10, 12-24
USDA 9-11

Landscape Use: Best used in small, desert garden spaces, rock gardens, raised desert planters or containers as an color and textural accent or specimen plant.

Form & Character: This is an elegant, small, but very rigid and stiff, herbaceous perennial, classy, inviting, yet dangerous.

Growth Habit: Slow to 20 inches in height, clumping and spreading slowly by rhizomes over time to form small colonies of clones, several feet in diameter.

Foliage/texture: Glaucous (blue gray), succulent stiff leaves about 1 inch wide to 8 to 10 inches long with short, stiff marginal black spines. Leaves taper to a sharp and VERY dangerous elongated, black spine-like tip; medium coarse texture.

Flowers & fruits: Towering terminal flower stalk to 6 feet in height that produces reddish-green flowers or bulbils. It's not the most ornamental of agave flowers; fruits are brown capsules, inconspicuous to ugly (not ornamental).

Seasonal color: None, though the glacous, small rigid and pointed leaves make for great year-around color and textural accent.

Temperature: Injured below 25oF or above 115oF.

Light: Light filtered shade from western sun is best.

Soil: Any soil type, but thrives best if soils are rocky and well drained or kept on the dry side.

Watering: Only limited supplemental irrigation during summer months is needed to keep plants looking healthy.

Pruning: None required

Propagation: Division of the plentiful basal offshoots is easiest, though I wouldn't try it without using a shovel and a good pair of thick leather garden gloves. FAR less common is the rooting of bulbils or sowing of seed.

Disease and pests: None

Additional comments: This is truly a great textural accent agave for those special intimate small desert garden spaces. 'Acantha' means a sharp spiny part or structure. The leaf tips of this impressive small agave are 'macro' indeed - very sharp and dangerous!

There are two A. macroacantha x A. victoria-reginae hybrids that horticultural plant freaks like myself can get quite excited about. They are that special. Agave x 'Little Shark' and Agave x 'Royal Spine'. Are they different hybrids or are they the same hybrid cross? You be the judge. Here's Agave x 'Little Shark' flowering! And for you Agaveheads, here's a close up pic of the flower stalk.