Contact Us Host an Event 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
1 rating

Wednesday - June 22, 2011

From: Georgetown, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Seed and Plant Sources, Cacti and Succulents
Title: Replacement for Spanish Dagger from Georgetown TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I have a Spanish Dagger plant in my garden which appears to be dying. Where can I purchase a replacement for this plant? The Spanish Dagger I have is close to 10 feet tall. What is the best way to take care of the plant once I replace it? Georgetown, Texas

ANSWER:

We have two plants in our Native Plant Database with the common name of "Spanish Dagger." Only one of them, Yucca treculeana (Don quixote's lace), is native to Texas so we are going to go with that. This plant grows natively somewhat south of Williamson County, but is known to survive in USDA Hardiness Zone 7, so the temperature should be all right where you are for this plant. It is a member of the Agavaceae or Century Plant Family, but unlike some plants referred to as "century plants" it does not bloom once and then die. It is shown in our webpage on this plant as growing usually to about 10 ft. tall, so your plant may just have reached the end of its normal lifespan.

As to where to purchase a replacement, Yucca treculeana  appears on our Plant Sale list. However, this list is subject to constant change, depending on what is available at the time of the sale. The Fall Sale is October 15 and 16, 2011, and we suggest you recheck that list as time for the sale comes closer. Since you live in Georgetown, it would be fairly easy for you to come to the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center to shop for that and other plants native to Central Texas. For other possibilities, go to our National Suppliers Directory, and either type "yucca treculeana" in the Name Search Box or your state and town in the Enter Search Location box. Unfortunately, we tried the Name Search and got zero results, so stick with the Search Location, at least for now. You will get a list of native plant nurseries, seed companies and landscape consultants in your general area. All have contact information and/or websites, so you can check for availability. You can also grow your own, see this article from Fine Gardening on Propagating Yucca.

On to care for a replacement. First, decide if replacing the same plant is what you really want to do. Looking once again at our webpage on this plant, you will see that it does well in part shade (2 to 6 hours of sun daily), has medium water use and its soil requirements are:  Sandy, Sandy Loam, Medium Loam, Clay Loam, Clay. We would add to that description the fact that, like all desert plants, this yucca needs extremely good drainage. Since you do not have the sandy soil of a desert environment, you may need to work in decomposed granite or other soils that permit drainage around the roots.

 

From the Image Gallery


Spanish dagger
Yucca treculeana

Spanish dagger
Yucca treculeana

Spanish dagger
Yucca treculeana

Spanish dagger
Yucca treculeana

More Seed and Plant Sources Questions

Source for materials for making seedballs
September 01, 2008 - Regarding your answer to the person looking for Red Clay for making seedballs: The Red Clay can be found at Armadillo Clay in Austin, TX. (The inquirer lives in Round Rock). The Wildflower Center arti...
view the full question and answer

Source of native Desert Lily for The Netherlands
July 23, 2010 - I am searching a bulb of Hesperocallis undulata. Do you know where I can get/buy this bulb I hope you can help me. Thank you very much warmest regards The Netherlands
view the full question and answer

Plants for a new duck pond that are duck proof
January 28, 2009 - Sir. I live in Charleston SC. I dug a pond for ducks in my backyard. I want to plant grass and anything else that will grow around the pond that the ducks won't want to eat up. What should I buy to p...
view the full question and answer

Source for supplier of cedar plants in Pennsylvania
January 20, 2009 - Mr. Smarty Pants - please disregard a stupid question I asked a little earlier today about sourcing cedar plants near Easton, PA. I figured out looking up "Nurseries" could lead to Yellow Pages ent...
view the full question and answer

Locating Rosa rugosa for Massachusetts
May 09, 2006 - There is a shrub that grows out on the Cape especially at the beach. I have always called it Beach Rose and I have heard other people call it a Beach Plum. However, the most recent picture of a Beac...
view the full question and answer

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