Yucca angustissima


There are not synonyms for this plant.


Yucca angustissima is native to Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Utah where the plant grow in desert flats or rocky hillsides and can spread up to 2200 m of altitude.


Yucca angustissima is a shrub succulent belonging to the Agavaceae botanical family. The plant can be solitary or forming clumps and can reach up to 3 m in diameter. The plant is caudiciform and from the caudex forms a dense rosette of leaves The plant has a woody thick caudex turnip-shape that can reach 15 cm in depth and 8 cm in diameter. The leaves are narrow lanceolate, linear, up to 60 cm long, pale yellow to bluish green in color with a white to reddish margins pointed at the apex. Blooming occurs from early spring to early summer and the blossoms are borne by long stalks from the center of the rosette. The Inflorescence is an erect cluster of small white flowers up to 2 m long. The flowers are pendent, bell-shaped, creamy white to green white sharply acuminate. The fruits are dry capsules, brown containing dull black seeds.


This is a slow growing plant, easy to cultivate. The plant needs a direct sun-light exposure all the year, this will help a lush growing. Long exposure to direct sun-light can cause burns and burnt spots. The succulent can tolerate temperatures to 45° C, but in winter requires temperatures at least 10 °C and higher. Too low temperatures can cause the stem or leaves to break due to water freezing inside the tissues. Temperatures between 10 and 15 °C allow the plants to enter vegetative rest which is essential for the flowering of the following year. The best draining soil for this genus is made up of 33% fertile loam and 66% coarse sand. The pumice should always be placed on the bottom of the pot. Remember to use a perforating pot to drain excess water. Watering can be done regularly during the vegetative period. Irrigation is proportional to the size of the pot, the position and the season. In Spring and Autumn the plant can be watered with a glass of water every 7-10 days; in summer it can be watered every 3-5 days. Decrease the amount of water if the plant is kept indoors or if the pot is smaller than 12 cm. The plant is used to growing in poor soils, for this reason it does not need abundant fertilization, it is sufficient to fertilize once in spring and once in summer. If the pot starts to be too small for the plant you can repot the plant in a pot 2 cm wider. Repotting should be done early in the growing season with fresh new potting soil; it is usually done every 3-4 years. Be careful to red spiders and mealy bugs.


Propagation is usually done by seed but cuttings is also possible. By cutting you can use the offsets during the spring. Cut an offset and then let it dry; after a few days the cut surface will dry and a callus will form, then place the cutting in a mixture of sand, soil and pumice. To increase the success of propagation you can make two or more cuttings at the same time. It is advisable to use rooting hormone at the base of the cut to energize root development. For cuttings it is recommended temperatures around 20 °C. By seed it is very simple to propagate the plant, it is enough to sow the seed in a sandy loam and keep it with a high level of humidity and at temperature of 14 C°.


The name of this genus was decided by the botanist Johann Jakob Dillen, who towards the end of the 1700’s took the name given by the people of Central America to the most common of these plants, extending it to the whole genus. Fibres obtained from the leaves of Yucca angustissima were used to make ropes and baskets. The specific epithet refers to the very narrow leaves of this species.

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