Posts Tagged Agave

Agave in Landscaping

Agave isn’t just grown for it’s syrup. It’s actually a very pretty ornamental succulent that could liven up any yard. Especially yards in in the South West or Western part of the U.S. I came across these great photos of different varieties of agave used in landscaping in California from Sunset magazine. I aspire to have a dessert garden someday.


“The light green leaves of a colony of A. attenuata contrast in this combo with the nearly black rosettes of Aeonium ‘Zwartkop’.” – Sunset Magazine. I like the contrast of green and deep purple in this garden.
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Agave Syrup

I don’t think of myself as having much of a sweet tooth as I enjoy eating fruits more then candy. But once in a while I can satisfy my need for sweets with a cup of fruit infusion tea and add a small teaspoon of agave syrup. I also like to add it to my cup of coffee too. It has a light sweetness to it. But I have not tried it with pancakes or baking yet.

Agave syrup is something new I’ve come across. I have noticed some fruit drinks use agave syrup as a sweetener too. It’s much sweeter then honey and it’s from the same plant used to make tequila. It’s made from the nectar of the blue agave plant, which is grown mostly in central Mexico. In Popular Science’s article, Agave Nectar, A Sweetener for Any Occasion, they described how the juices are expressed from the core of the plants and then processed to produce the nectar. Then after the juices are extracted, they are heated to break down the carbohydrates.


larryn2009 of took this nice picture of blue agave plants at the Puerto Vallarta Botanical Gardens. They look like they are easy to grow in a sunny climate. I might have actually seen a few of these grown as landscaping in California.

Time magazine wrote in it’s June 2008 issue that the future of agave syrup does look promising. It’s interest has grown amongst heath conscious people. And popularity has grown in countries such as Germany, New Zealand, and Japan. And in the U.S. , many food manufacturers want to add it to drinks, ice cream, ketchup, amongst other recipes.

Cane sugar and honey are fine as natural sweeteners, they are better than high fructose corn syrup. But agave syrup surpasses them all. And you don’t need to use as much, as the sweetness is concentrated. And if you are diabetic, the The Chicago Tribune adds, “It scores around 20 on the glycemic index, a measure of how quickly carbohydrates break down during digestion. Cane or beet sugar scores around 70. Agave nectar’s score is so low on the scale that diabetics can use it as a sugar substitute.” Ingested sugar is still burned as energy or stored as fat, so you still have to be careful to not over indulge on agave syrup. It has plenty of calories and you can find yourself needing to exercise more!

products-agaveflavourMadhava Agave comes in different flavors too. Imagine adding this to your morning coffee! Sweet Cactus Farms also sells agave syrup. And Madhava Agave has a great photo gallery of the farm and these interesting looking plants.

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