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Yucca aloifolia (Spanish Bayonet)

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Scientific Name

Yucca aloifolia L.

Common Names

Spanish Bayonet, Dagger Plant, Spanish Dagger, Aloe Yucca

Synonyms

Yucca aloifolia var. aloifolia, Dracaena lenneana, Sarcoyucca aloifolia, Yucca arcuata, Yucca atkinsii, Yucca conspicua, Yucca crenulata, Yucca draconis, Yucca haruckeriana, Yucca parmentieri, Yucca purpurea, Yucca quadricolor, Yucca serrulata, Yucca striata, Yucca tenuifolia, Yucca tricolor, Yucca yucatana

Scientific Classification

Family: Asparagaceae
Subfamily: Agavoideae
Genus: Yucca

Description

Yucca aloifolia is an evergreen shrub, up to 26 feet (8 m) tall, with a simple or sparsely to densely branched stem. It bears a terminal rosette of sharp-pointed, sword-shaped leaves and terminal panicle of bell-shaped flowers. The flowers are creamy-white or purple-tinged, up to 4 inches (10 cm) long and up to 2 inches (5 cm) in diameter.

Photo via flickr.com

Hardiness

USDA hardiness zones 7a to 11b: from 0 °F (−17.8 °C) to 40 °F (+4.4 °C).

How to Grow and Care

Under the right conditions, Yuccas are not difficult plants to grow. They tend to thrive on a little neglect, rather than too much attention. They are especially easy to overwater, and soggy stems are a sign of too much water. The best conditions for Yuccas include a sunny corner with relatively low humidity. They are not prone to many pests, although scale can be an issue. Over time, plants will typically lose their lower leaves (in nature, they droop, forming a skirt around the trunk), giving the plant a pleasant “tree-like” appearance.

Yuccas are relatively slow-growing plants that should only need to be repotted every other year. They do well slightly pot-bound, as long as they don’t become heavy enough to tip over their containers. Repotting larger plants can be difficult, so larger plants can be refreshed with new potting soil by digging out the top 2 inches (5 cm) of the container and adding new soil. During typical repotting, remove the plant from its container and go up one container size. Always use fresh potting soil… – See more at: How to Grow and Care for Yucca

Origin

Yucca aloifolia is native to the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts of the United States from southern Virginia south to Florida and west to the Texas Gulf Coast, to Mexico along the Yucatán coast and to Bermuda and parts of the Caribbean.

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