Echeveria Agavoides 'Frank Reinelt'
Named for the man who crossbred Echeveria agavoides ‘Prolifera’ and E. colorata back in the 80s, E. agavoides ‘Frank Reinelt’ has the classically waxy leaves of the agavoides. This rosette-forming succulent isn’t just beautiful in shape, when you look close enough, the striking red colour is iridescent. Ideal conditions are required for Frank Reinelt to shine at its brightest, but the natural ebb and flow of colours through the seasons is a beautiful journey to be on. The fresh green of new growth begins to take over the leaves of the plant in spring in a slow transition from red, to orange, to green. In summer and winter, Frank Reinelt’s colours are the most exciting. Classic Echeveria bell-shaped flowers in medium pink and soft yellow hang from delicately branching stems. This is a top choice for lovers of red Echeveria!
Echeveria Agavoides is one of 200 species of Echeveria found and described. They grow throughout central and southern USA with the greatest proliferation being in Mexico. There are also some found to the countries South and West of Mexico which are the more varied of the Echeveria species. The name 'Agavoides' comes from its striking resemblance to Agave and is also known as 'Molded Wax Agave'. It ranges over at least 8 Mexican states attesting to its wide array of many forms, cultivars and hybrids.
Sizes and Colours
It forms a dense rosette of 20 to 25 leaves which are 70 to 120mm long and can grow up to 100 to 300 mm across and high. A few are solitary rosettes, often after a 2 to 3 year period it divides into multi-headed rosettes. Echeveria Agavoides is one of the few species that grows stolons with a new young plant on the end of it which will reach out past the mother plant to deposit its new young one just out of its shadow. Leaves often concave above and become rounded or keeled on the undersides. Most cultivars and hybrids have varying green to pale green leaves with many now exhibiting red to dark red forms with black margins when exposed to cold and strong sunlight.
A very variable species in size and colour which highly depends on how you grow it. Whether it is stressed or softly in the shade makes a huge difference to the development of the plant. Stressed plants are generally considered more beautiful and closer to how they might be in nature.
Flowers can vary but are consistent within the species. They all bear one to five branches 300 to 400mm tall with a grouping of 5 to 12 pink with yellow tipped, some orange tubular flowers in a cyme.
It is one of the hardiest of all the Echeveria's, tolerating extreme heat and mildly frost tolerant.
Growing times are Spring to Autumn where more water is needed. Over the winter months allow your plants to dry out much more. Pot culture definitely suits these Echeveria's and it can easily be planted in the garden in Australia as long as your soil is well drained. A light top dressing of a slow release fertiliser will keep it growing well for another year. Pot it into the size pot you would like your plant to grow but make sure you're thinking 2 to 3 years ahead before it will need repotting into a fresh mix. Removing most of the old roots when repotting will ensure the plant develops a whole new set of roots for its new home. Scatter some course gravel on top of your soil mix after potting - this will help to keep the lower leaves from laying on the soil as the plant grows and this also assists in a free movement of fresh air.
Threats and pests
There shouldn't be many pests to this plant. A possible aphid attack in Spring on its new flower heads may occur. Mealy bugs can be a problem to watch out for as they may be hiding in its new young leaves. Scale insects can occasionally infest a plant. As Autumn comes remove the older dead and dying leaves to reduce fungal issues and increase air flow around it over winter. Wet feet or continual watering, and not letting your plant dry out are the commonest causes of death in succulents. Too much shade elongates or stretches your plant which then can lose its compact rosette shape. Plants often lose much of those stressed colours they can attain in nature.
Several methods are used. Home style is by division or waiting for pups or stolons to grow. Once you see them rooting, it's time to remove and pot individually. Echeveria agavoides can be quite difficult to grow from leaf cuttings. With one of the most difficult being 'Frank Reinelt' which require a head cut to induce new young heads to remove and root when they grow.
View our Echeveria Agavoides range or purchase your very own Frank Reinelt today!
- Bridgette Fleming