Rent Shop Volunteer Join

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

Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

 
rate this answer
2 ratings

Thursday - March 17, 2011

From: Golden, CO
Region: Rocky Mountain
Topic: Propagation
Title: Propagation of Red Yucca from Golden, CO
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have collected the mature seeds of Hesperaloe parviflora (the red yucca). Can you tell me what steps I need to follow for successful germination? Many thanks!

ANSWER:

Our first thought was that you can't get there from here.   In Jefferson Co., Colorado you are at USDA Hardiness Zones 4a to 5b, pretty cold for Hesperaloe parviflora (Red yucca), which is native to southwest Texas and northern Mexico. However, we did some more research and learned that this plant can tolerate temperatures down to zero, and likes rocky mountainsides. Read more about it at The Laptop Gardener "Tough as Nails" Red Yucca. We would caution you about using seeds you gathered somewhere else. If you found Red Yuccas growing near you and gathered seeds from those, the plants you propagate have a much better chance for survival.

From Jill Nokes' book How to Grow Native Plants of Texas and the Southwest (see Bibliography below) we found these instructions for propagation of Red Yucca:

"Coral Yucca sprouts readily from untreated seed. Sow the seed immediately after harvesting in seed flats, or in individual 4- or 6- inch pots. The container should be at least 4 inches deep and contain well-drained soil media. Plant cells tend to cramp the roots, causing them to grow in knots. Premoisten the soil and then gently press the seed into it, without watering. Keep in a cold frame until the following spring. Some seed will sprout immediately, while others will continue to emerge over the course of the season. Some growers leave this plant in a flat for a year before moving it into a one-gallon container. After 6 months, move it to strong sunlight."

From our Native Plant Imsge Gallery:


Hesperaloe parviflora


Hesperaloe parviflora


Hesperaloe parviflora


Hesperaloe parviflora

 

 

 

More Propagation Questions

Controlling size of red yucca in Austin
March 13, 2009 - I have planted red yucca in my backyard, which produces many flowering stalks for the past few years. These red yucca are becoming too large for the area that are planted in. What recommendations do...
view the full question and answer

Seed propagation for Goldeneye Sunflower for Austin
October 30, 2010 - I have been unable to find Golden Eye seed, and am therefore thinking about harvesting seed from existing plants. My question is: At what stage of the development do I make the harvest of fully develo...
view the full question and answer

Source for Frostweed plants or seeds from Portland TX
June 23, 2013 - I am looking for somewhere I can buy Frostweed plants or seeds. I live in Portland, TX, but frequent San Antonio and the Hill Country. Can you help me with this?
view the full question and answer

Harvesting seeds on the American basket flower (Centaurea americana)
May 30, 2010 - Where are the seeds on an American basket flower? How do I get them out to propagate them? When can you get them out? Thank you.
view the full question and answer

Germination of seeds of Stephanomeria pauciflora (Brownplume wire lettuce)
February 20, 2015 - I have discovered a very fast growing Stephanomeria pauciflora on property where I work here in Terlingua, TX. At first glance it appears as an invasive weed but on closer inspection with my macro le...
view the full question and answer

Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.