Yucca flaccida

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needle palm
Yucca flaccida.jpg
Y. flaccida, Royal Botanic Garden, Madrid
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
Order: Asparagales
Family: Asparagaceae
Genus: Yucca
Species: Y. flaccida
Binomial name
Yucca flaccida
  • Yucca filamentosa var. flaccida (Haw.) Engelm.
  • Yucca concava Haw.
  • Yucca exigua Baker
  • Yucca glaucescens Haw.
  • Yucca puberula Haw.
  • Yucca orchioides Carrière
  • Yucca louisianensis Trel.
  • Yucca smalliana Fern.
  • Yucca freemanii Shinners

Yucca flaccida Haw., common name "needle palm," is a species of flowering plant in the family Asparagaceae, native to eastern North America from Ontario and Maryland south to Florida and Texas. It is also reportedly naturalized in Poland.[3] Growing to 55 cm (22 in) tall by 150 cm (59 in) broad, it is a stemless evergreen shrub with a basal rosette of sharply pointed, swordlike leaves up to 55 cm (22 in) long. In summer, 150 cm (59 in) long panicles of bell-shaped creamy white flowers are held above the foliage.[4]

The Latin specific epithet flaccida means "weak", "feeble", referring to the leaves which often fold under their own weight (the inner leaves may remain erect as they are supported by the outer ones).[5]

Some authorities regard Y. flaccida as a variety or form of Y. filamentosa, rather than as a separate species.[6] Both are cultivated and valued as architectural plants.[4]

Numerous cultivars are available, some with variegated leaves, of which 'Golden Sword'[7] and 'Ivory'[8] have gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit.


  1. ^ "International Plant Names Index (IPNI) -Yucca flaccida". Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  2. ^ Tropicos, Yucca flaccida
  3. ^ Kew World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
  4. ^ a b RHS A-Z encyclopedia of garden plants. United Kingdom: Dorling Kindersley. 2008. p. 1136. ISBN 1405332964. 
  5. ^ Harrison, Lorraine (2012). RHS Latin for gardeners. United Kingdom: Mitchell Beazley. p. 224. ISBN 9781845337315. 
  6. ^ "Flora of North America (FNA) - Yucca flaccida". Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  7. ^ "RHS Plant Selector - Yucca flaccida 'Golden Sword'". Retrieved 10 June 2013. 
  8. ^ "RHS Plant Selector - Yucca flaccida 'Ivory'". Retrieved 10 June 2013.