Scientific: Agave murpheyi
Common: Murphey's agave, Murphey's century plant, Hohokam agave
Family: Asparagaceae (subfamily Agavoideae)
Origin: Central Arizona south into Sonora, Mexico in rocky canyon slopes below 3,000 feet in elevation. Occurrence of A. murpheyi in Arizona is thought to be because of transport north from Mexico and cultivation by Hohokam Indians for food and fiber during pre-Columbian times. Most Arizona occurrences of indigenuous A. murpheyi are thought to be located around Hohokam archeological sites.

Pronounciation: A-GA-ve MUR-fee-i

Hardiness zones:
Sunset 12-24
USDA 9-11

Landscape Use: Similar to A. deserti, this is a medium-sized agave for large 'out-of-the-away' desert landscape garden spaces, textural accent, focal point.

Form & Character: Rosetting, sharp, dangerous, and unfriendly.

Growth Habit: Mostly herbacous yet fiberous succulent evergreen perennial, upright and rounded to 5 feet tall with equal to greater spread. Produces many basal off shoots, eventually developing a clumping habit.

Foliage/texture: Leaves are rigid, coarsely fibered, with a thick cuticle, narrowly lanceolate and with weak, glaucous gray, margins with single well defined teeth, over 3 feet in length with distinct imprinting; coarse texture.

Flowers & fruits: Monocarpic, flower stalks are sturdy and long up to 15 feet tall; flowers small and pale green yellow with very short open tube; fruit capsules small to medium. will produce bulbils.

Seasonal color: None, except at the time when Murphey's agave producees a large, beautiful flowering stalk at end of life from March to July.

Temperature: Indigenous to the lower Sonoran Desert; thus, it is completely at home in lower desert landscape settings.

Light: Full sun

Soil: Any soil type, but thrives best if soils are very gravely sand to loamy coarse sand.

Watering: Limited to no supplemental irrigation is required for Murphey's agave.

Pruning: None

Propagation: Seed (rare), division of underground rhizomes that form basal off shoots, propagation of bulbils.

Disease and pests: None

Additional comments: Murphey's agave is a dryland agave that bespeaks of the desert and desert canyons. The cultivar 'Engard' is striated with yellow marginal variegation.