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Conservatory GreenhouseHouseplants

Yucca elephantipes
  • RHS AGM

spineless yucca

A large, upright shrub or small tree with several trunks growing from near ground level, sparsely branched. The stiff, leathery leaves are narrow, and up to 1m long. On mature plants flowering spikes up to 1m long appear in summer and autumn bearing large numbers of creamy-white, hanging flowers

Synonyms
Yucca gigantea
Yucca guatemalensis

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Size
Ultimate height
8–12 metres
Time to ultimate height
20–50 years
Ultimate spread
4–8 metres
Growing conditions
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Green
Summer Cream White Green
Autumn Cream White Green
Winter Green
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

South–facing or West–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Drought resistance
Yes
Hardiness
H2
Botanical details
Family
Asparagaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Evergreen
Habit
Tufted
Potentially harmful
Skin allergen. Wear gloves and other protective equipment when handling
Genus

Yucca can be evergreen perennials, shrubs or trees, with dense or loose rosettes of stiff, sword-shaped leaves and tall panicles of bell-shaped flowers

Name status

Not valid

Plant range
Mexico, Central America

How to grow

Cultivation

Under glass grow in loam-based potting compost with added extra grit. Water freely while in active growth and apply a balanced liquid fertiliser monthly; water sparingly in winter. May can also be grown as a patio plant and moved to a frost-free location over winter

Propagation

Propagate by seed, sown in spring at 19-24°C. Flowers may need hand-pollination to set seed. Rooted suckers can be removed in spring or take root cuttings in winter

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Mediterranean climate plants
  • Architectural
  • Patio and container plants
  • Sub-tropical
  • Conservatory and greenhouse
Pruning

Pruning not normally needed, but damaged leaves and spent flower spikes can be removed as necessary in the spring

Pests

May be susceptible to aphids on flower spikes, and snails

Diseases

May be susceptible to yucca leaf spot

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