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Products > Yucca elephantipes
 
Yucca elephantipes - Giant Yucca
   

 
Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Succulent
Family: Agavaceae (Agaves)
Origin: Guatemala (North America)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: White
Bloomtime: Spring/Summer
Synonyms: [Yucca gloriosa, Hort., Y. guatemalensis]
Height: 15-25 feet
Width: 15-25 feet
Exposure: Full Sun
Seaside: Yes
Summer Dry: Yes
Deer Tolerant: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Low Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: <15 F
Yucca elephantipes (Giant Yucca) - This is a quick and easy-growing treelike yucca with a trunk, usually multi-stemmed, to 15 feet tall or more. Some specimens can even reach a height of 25 feet. The soft tipped 12-18 inch long flexible leaves are pale green with small teeth along the margins and a soft tip. Large white flowers appear in late spring or summer on 2-3 foot tall flower stalks. It will grow in seaside gardens. Do not plant it near foundations as this yucca is hard to remove once mature. There has long been a discussion on the validity of applying the name Yucca gloriosa to this plant. The true Yucca gloriosa of the south-eastern United States is shorter, with blue green leaves that are more rigid and the plant does not get as massive a base. David Ferguson wrote in the VOL.73 of the Cactus & Succulent Journal that nurseries on the west coast have long misidentified Yucca elephantipes as Yucca gloriosa. This leads to the further problem of what to call the plant with long luxurious leaves that we have long misidentified as Yucca elephantipes. Some still believe this is the true Yucca elephantipes while others think it a hybrid. Any with an opinion on this please let us know. Yucca elephantipes is from Mexico, Guatemala. The name Yucca was given to the genus by Linnaeus, perhaps by mistake, as it is the Latinized derivation of "yuca", the Caribbean name for Cassava (Manihot esculenta) an unrelated plant in the Euphorbia family that is native to the Caribbean area. Interestingly it was also Linnaeus who applied the name Manihot to Yuca.  This description is based on research and observations of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in our nursery garden and in other gardens that we visit. We also incorporate comments received and appreciate getting feedback of any kind from those who have any additional information about this plant, particularly if they disagree with what we have written or if they have additional cultural tips that would aid others in growing Yucca elephantipes.
 
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