Caring for agave cactus requires the You may never have realized this, but agave cactus actually aren't cactus. They are agave, a different type of succulent. They are not related to cacti, nor are they aloe, another plant they resemble. They are most recognized as a main ingredient in tequila, although they are also the source of agave nectar, a sweetener popular with vegans and those who don't consume sugar. Agave are very sturdy plant and almost anyone is capable of successfully growing them. The only problem you could run into with an agave houseplant is spatial; many full grown species of agave mature to over three feet wide.
There are over 200 recognized species of agave. Most of them consist of rosettes of tough, rigid leaves with teeth. Some of them produce musky odors to attract bats and others produce sweet odors to attract bugs. If you want to grow an agave at home, you can pick up a dwarf version that does not stink or attract insects from your local nursery.
Once you have your own agave plant, you can either grow it in a pot inside or plant it outside. Agave are extremely hardy. They like warm daytime temperatures but will tolerate cold winters and nights. Don't try to grow an agave outside if it snows where you live, though. Agave can't live in frozen ground. Agave grow best in full sunlight. If you live in a cold climate, you can pot your agave and keep it outside during the summer and bring it in and place it in front of a south facing window in the winter.
Agave are succulents and don't need much in the way of watering. They store water for a long time in their leaves. They need to be kept in soil that drains well as they do not like to sit in soggy soil or puddles. During the summer months while your agave is growing. You should soak the soil about once per week and allow it to drain completely. During the winter, your agave barely needs any water at all. One watering per month should suffice. If you live in an extremely hot area or a desert you may need to water your plant more frequently in the summer, especially if you suspect the water of evaporating.
Agave grow well if you offer them half strength general purpose fertilizer when you water them twice per month. Only offer your plant food from May to September. If you offer your agave food during the winter you will encourage lush growth which can kill your plant during cold and dark months.
Agave need to be repotted every two or three years as they grow. When it is time to repot your agave, wrap the leaves in newspaper so you don't cut or injure yourself. Turn the pot upside down and tap out the roots. If the roots look rotten at all, they should be removed as close to the plant as possible. Replant your agave in compost in a new pot slightly larger than the diameter of the plant.