Pronounciation: Man-FRE-da ma-cu-LO-sa
Landscape Use: Textural accent ground cover for small planter beds, container plant, novelty plant, collection gardens, shade gardens. In Phoenix, this is a great, informal spreading plant for a natural setting under tree canopy shade.
Form & Character: Low prostrate and spreading, bright, cheerful with a tinge of mystery caused by the purple and white flowers.
Growth Habit: Prostrate and slowly clumping by underground stems called "rhizomes".
Foliage/Texture: Narrow lanceolate, strap-like succulent leaves to 8 to 18 inches long, basal, dull green to greyish green, cupped, often with purpkle red spots (more so in sun than shade); medium coarse texture.
Flowers & Fruits: Texas tuberose grows solitary elongated flower stalks in April that extend to heights of 7 to 12 feet. Flowers are intricate, meant for close inspection, with extended anthers and petals that are bicolored. Fruits are an enlarged green capsule.
Seasonal Color: None, except foliage will redden during winter chill.
Temperature: Tolerant to 18oF, struggles to survive in full sun in Phoenix during summer.
Light: Full to partial sun, best in Phoenix in dappled light shade.
Soil: Tolerant of soil alkalinity.
Watering: Needs regular irrigations in desert areas to remain full.
Pruning: None except to remove fading flower stalks or to divide clump to control spread.
Propagation: Division of clump or seed.
Disease and pests: None, this is a very tough plant.
Additional comments: Texas tuberose look delicate, but is surprisingly tough, a must plant for an informal, 'natural', shaded garden spot. Manfreda is a genus of about 20 species of flowering plants. There are many wonderful cultivated varieties incuding 'Helen Wynans' and 'Macho Mocha'. Manfreda will hybridize with plants in the genus Polianthes and Agave. Horticultural crosses of Manfreda with small Agave species has resulted in a number of beautiful and unique named cultivated selections of the hybrid plant Mangave. Check out this Mangave selection!