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Yucca treculeana Thriving in Research Trials

May 29, 2009

Yucca treculeanaThe outdoor research trials at Longwood Gardens contain over 1,300 plant accessions from around the world. Of considerable interest is evaluating the cold hardiness and heat tolerance of promising plant species and cultivars in Longwood’s USDA Zone 6b climate. Occasionally, a plant performs surprisingly well considering its nativity. One such example is Yucca treculeana , commonly referred to as Spanish Dagger or Don Quixote’s Lace. Yucca treculeana is native to southwestern Texas in the USA and Chihuahua and Durango in northeastern Mexico (USDA Zones 8-10), but has been living in the Longwood research trials since 2003. It survived 0˚F (-18˚C) this past winter and flowered for the first time this spring, beginning about 2 weeks ago. Hopefully this specimen will continue to perform exceptionally and eventually find a home in Longwood’s display gardens.