The biggest challenge in our Mediterranean garden in rural Mallorca is keeping the agaves under control. This entails The Boss taking his special saw to the lowest ‘blades’ – they’re more like weapons than something as innocent-sounding as leaves.
This summer we did more gardening than is usual for the time of year, by getting up earlier in the morning. I’m Head of Weeding. The Boss is Head of Sawing & Agave Management. He doesn’t allow me access to his saw (boys and their toys), or the agaves. Thank goodness.
As well as a sharp point at the tip, each blade has spikes down each side. As careful as The Boss is when he squeezes himself among the agaves to trim them back, he still takes on the additional role of a human pincushion. Head of Weeding adds Emergency Nurse to her duties, wielding Betadine, cotton wool, and plasters. If you don’t yet have shares in a company making first-aid necessities, now could be the time to invest!
Off But Not Gone
Disposing of the sawn-off ‘blades’ is no easy task. Our local Parc Verde (recycling centre) won’t take them as garden waste, and these things have to dry out fully before we can burn them on the bonfire. We’re fortunate: we have a large field and the bottom of that field isn’t visible from our house. Just as well really, as several dozen agave ‘blades’ are spread out across the land to dry in the sun. One day they’ll have dried out enough to burn.
We were gifted our agaves by a couple of kind neighbours. The plants were very small at the time, and we had no idea how close together and large (and dangerous) they would become. My advice if you acquire some small agaves to plant in your garden would be to space them out well, buy yourself a good saw and some sturdy gauntlets.
A pair of the latter is winging its way to our apartado (post office box) as I write. We should save a lot of money on plasters and iodine next year.
@Jan Edwards 2021