En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
1 rating

Wednesday - February 26, 2014

From: Nottingham, England
Region: Other
Topic: Non-Natives, Cacti and Succulents
Title: Damage to Yucca rostrata from Nottingham, England
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

Hi, I have a yucca rostrata which has had its head snapped off in high winds (we live in Nottingham, England) we have left the trunk in the ground, will this re grow?? What is the best thing to do with the head? can we re plant this? If so, how? The tree is 3 metres in height including the head.

ANSWER:

Because we could not find Yucca rostrata in our Native Plant Database, we hunted by that name on the Internet and found this from San Marcos (Texas) Growers. Several other references mentioned this as native to Texas, which ordinarily would mean that it would be in our Native Plant Database.

All of which is neither here nor there, because the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, home of Mr. Smarty Plants, in Austin TX, is committed to the growth, protection and propagation of plants native not only to North America but to the area in which those plants are being grown. The administrators of our database are usually very careful that no non-native plants get into the database, so we can't even send you our plant information on your plant. What we can tell you for sure, is that there is NO yucca native to England. Yuccas are desert plants, used to growing in harsh, alkaline soils in blazing sun with little rain. If yours fell over, it may have been more as a result of surprise at being in such a lush, rainy climate than that of high winds.

Since it doesn't appear to be native to North America, and we know it's not native to England, the best we can do is refer you to the link to a Central Texas grower (San Marcos (Texas) Growers) that we gave you above. They have a very good article on the care of the plant.  We will say that if the stalk broken was a flowering stalk, no, it will not grow back, but neither will the plant die, as happens when the flowering stalks of some agaves are broken or cut off. We suggest you trim off the broken stalk and give the plant a chance to decide if it is going to live or die. And if it recovers, it will put up more bloom stalks.

Also, since we obviously cannot help you, we found a Q&A on yuccas in England from BBC Lancashire. From a company called Tropical Britain, we found this order form for Yucca rostrata, so you know we believe you when you say you have one, we just don't know how to answer your question.

 

More Cacti and Succulents Questions

Preserving century plant bloom stalk from Sedona AZ
December 16, 2012 - I have the flower stalk from a century plant which I am using as a Christmas tree. Can you advise me as to what I should do to preserve it for future use? Should it be kept indoors or outdoors. Pro...
view the full question and answer

Branches of yucca being blown down in Torrance CA
August 19, 2010 - I have a Yucca tree about 30 ft tall. Lately when the wind picks up in Torrance we have had about 3 branches fall out of the tree. Can you help me with this. I don't want to cut all of the branches...
view the full question and answer

Native plants for a New York, NY apartment?
August 14, 2009 - Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, What are some native Mid-Atlantic/New England plants that can be grown well indoors? I live in an apartment in New York City and have recently realised that the plants I'v...
view the full question and answer

Why is my Agave suffering in Mesa, Arizona?
August 06, 2009 - I live in Mesa AZ, and have an agave that we planted 7 years ago. It grew like crazy with hardly any care whatsoever, until I cut off some of the bottom leaves and 'pups' about a month ago. Recently...
view the full question and answer

Dividing and planting Yucca and pups in New Mexico
June 23, 2009 - I bought a Yucca plant and had 7 plants in one planter 1 large and 6 small. We wanted to split up the plants so we carefully separated them and planted them. My soil is very sandy (Rio Rancho) but I...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP | STAFF
© 2015 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center