Of all the things the previous occupant of my last apartment left behind, my favourite was a potted Agave. I've never had much luck with potted plants and never seen much point in plants that aren't useful but the Agave was looked pretty and hardy and was free. Unfortunately, judging by the pups squeezing their way out from under the parent plant, the Agave needed to be repotted.
This chore scared me in a number of ways. I have very little experience with repotting plants, so the odds of killing it in the process seemed high. Furthermore, the Agave is a large, spiny, dense plant so the odds of injuring myself seemed equally high. So I put it off for a year.
Now that the days are warm again and the Agave has survived my neglect for a whole year, I felt that it deserved some care. With the help of my wife (who got stabbed instead of me) I've finally done it.
We started by removing the Agave from it's pot. This took the form of a dangerous tug-of-war, myself gripping the dead leaves around the base while my wife struggled with the pot. Once freed, it was apparent just how badly root bound the poor plant was.
I carefully began untangling roots, cutting off far more pups than I expected as I came across them. The pups were attached to the parent plant by way of long ropey looking growths which I mostly cut off and discarded.
In the end I had eighteen pups, removed and potted in plastic ups (with holes in the bottoms, of course). The Agave returned to it's original pot, it's roots trimmed down by about half.
Will any of these survive being manhandled? I hope so. When I feel certain which ones are going to survive, I will make another post here offering them up to any local gardener who cares to claim one. I certainly don't have a need for so many Agave.