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Uses

Toxic parts

The roots contain saponins[1]. Whilst saponins are quite toxic to people, they are poorly absorbed by the body and so tend to pass straight through. They are also destroyed by prolonged heat, such as slow baking in an oven. Saponins are found in many common foods such as beans[K]. Saponins are much more toxic to some creatures, such as fish, and hunting tribes have traditionally put large quantities of them in streams, lakes etc in order to stupefy or kill the fish[K].

Edible uses

Notes

Fruit - raw or cooked[2][3][4]. Large and fleshy[5][6]. The fruit is often dried for winter use[7].

Flowers - raw or dried, crushed and used as a flavouring[8][9][10]. A tasty addition to the salad bowl[6]. We have found the flowers to be fairly bitter[K].

Flowering stem - cooked and used like asparagus[9].

Flowers

Fruit

Material uses

A fibre obtained from the leaves is used for making ropes, cloth, baskets and mats[11][3][4][12][13]. The fibre can also be used for making paper[14] The leaves are harvested in summer, they are scraped to remove the outer skin and are then soaked in water for 24 hours prior to cooking. The fibres are cooked for 2 hours with lye and then beaten in a ball mill for 4 hours. They make a cream paper[14].

The leaves are used as paint brushes[15].

The roots are rich in saponins and can be used as a soap substitute for washing the hair, body and clothing[3][4][12][16].

Unknown part

Medicinal uses(Warning!)

A poultice made from the roots is used in the treatment of sores, skin diseases and sprains[1][16].

Unknown part

Ecology

Ecosystem niche/layer

Ecological Functions

Nothing listed.

Forage

Nothing listed.

Shelter

Nothing listed.

Propagation

Seed - sow spring in a greenhouse. Pre-soaking the seed for 24 hours in warm water may reduce the germination time. It usually germinates within 1 - 12 months if kept at a temperature of 20°c. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on in the greenhouse or cold frame for at least their first two winters. Plant them out into their permanent positions in early summer and consider giving them some winter protection for at least their first winter outdoors - a simple pane of glass is usually sufficient[K]. Seed is not produced in Britain unless the flowers are hand pollinated.

Root cuttings in late winter or early spring. Lift in April/May and remove small buds from base of stem and rhizomes. Dip in dry wood ashes to stop any bleeding and plant in a sandy soil in pots in a greenhouse until established[17].

Division of suckers in late spring. Larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions. We have found that it is best to pot up smaller divisions and grow them on in light shade in a greenhouse or cold frame until they are growing away well. Plant them out in the following spring.

Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Yucca filamentosa. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.



Cultivation

A very easily grown plant, it thrives in most soils but prefers a sandy loam and full exposure to the south[18]. Dislikes peaty or chalky soils[19]. Can succeed in light shade[K]. Plants are hardier when grown on poor sandy soils[20]. Established plants are very drought resistant[21].

Plants are hardy to at least -15°c when grown in a well-drained soil. This species is one of the toughest members of the genus and once established is capable of surviving, and even thriving, despite considerable neglect. Plants growing in dense weed competition on our Cornwall trial grounds have managed to spread and even flower[K]. A very ornamental and free flowering species[7], there are some named varieties[22]. In the plants native environment, its flowers can only be pollinated by a certain species of moth. This moth cannot live in Britain and, if fruit and seed is required, hand pollination is necessary. This can be quite easily and successfully done using something like a small paint brush. Individual crowns are monocarpic, dying after flowering[23]. However, the crown will usually produce a number of sideshoots before it dies and these will grow on to flower in about four years[23]. Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[20].

Members of this genus seem to be immune to the predations of rabbits[23]

Crops

Problems, pests & diseases

Associations & Interactions

There are no interactions listed for Yucca filamentosa. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.

Polycultures & Guilds

There are no polycultures listed which include Yucca filamentosa.

Descendants

Cultivars

Varieties

None listed.

Subspecies

None listed.

Full Data

This table shows all the data stored for this plant.

Taxonomy
Binomial name
Yucca filamentosa
Genus
Yucca
Family
Agavaceae
Imported References
Medicinal uses
Material uses & Functions
Botanic
Propagation
Cultivation
Environment
Cultivation
Uses
Edible uses
None listed.
Material uses
None listed.
Medicinal uses
None listed.
Functions & Nature
Functions
Provides forage for
Provides shelter for
Environment
Hardiness Zone
4
Heat Zone
?
Water
moderate
Sun
full sun
Shade
light shade
Soil PH
Soil Texture
Soil Water Retention
Environmental Tolerances
  • Drought
  • Strong wind
Ecosystems
Native Climate Zones
None listed.
Adapted Climate Zones
None listed.
Native Geographical Range
None listed.
Native Environment
None listed.
Ecosystem Niche
None listed.
Root Zone Tendancy
None listed.
Life
Deciduous or Evergreen
Herbaceous or Woody
Life Cycle
Growth Rate
Mature Size
Fertility
?
Pollinators
Flower Colour
?
Flower Type

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"image:Yucca filamentosa1218678607.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.

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References

  1. ? 1.01.11.2 Foster. S. & Duke. J. A. A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants. Eastern and Central N. America. Houghton Mifflin Co. ISBN 0395467225 (1990-00-00)
  2. ? 2.02.1 Hedrick. U. P. Sturtevant's Edible Plants of the World. Dover Publications ISBN 0-486-20459-6 (1972-00-00)
  3. ? 3.03.13.23.33.4 Uphof. J. C. Th. Dictionary of Economic Plants. Weinheim (1959-00-00)
  4. ? 4.04.14.24.34.4 Usher. G. A Dictionary of Plants Used by Man. Constable ISBN 0094579202 (1974-00-00)
  5. ? 5.05.1 Yanovsky. E. Food Plants of the N. American Indians. Publication no. 237. U.S. Depf of Agriculture. ()
  6. ? 6.06.16.2 Facciola. S. Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants. Kampong Publications ISBN 0-9628087-0-9 (1990-00-00)
  7. ? 7.07.17.2 F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956 Oxford University Press (1951-00-00)
  8. ? 8.08.1 McPherson. A. and S. Wild Food Plants of Indiana. Indiana University Press ISBN 0-253-28925-4 (1977-00-00)
  9. ? 9.09.19.2 Bird. R. (Editor) Growing from Seed. Volume 4. Thompson and Morgan. (1990-00-00)
  10. ? 10.010.1 Kunkel. G. Plants for Human Consumption. Koeltz Scientific Books ISBN 3874292169 (1984-00-00)
  11. ? 11.011.1 Lust. J. The Herb Book. Bantam books ISBN 0-553-23827-2 (1983-00-00)
  12. ? 12.012.112.2 Sargent. C. S. Manual of the Trees of N. America. Dover Publications Inc. New York. ISBN 0-486-20278-X (1965-00-00)
  13. ? 13.013.1 Buchanan. R. A Weavers Garden. ()
  14. ? 14.014.114.2 Bell. L. A. Plant Fibres for Papermaking. Liliaceae Press (1988-00-00)
  15. ? 15.015.1 Balls. E. K. Early Uses of Californian Plants. University of California Press ISBN 0-520-00072-2 (1975-00-00)
  16. ? 16.016.116.216.3 Moerman. D. Native American Ethnobotany Timber Press. Oregon. ISBN 0-88192-453-9 (1998-00-00)
  17. ? Sheat. W. G. Propagation of Trees, Shrubs and Conifers. MacMillan and Co (1948-00-00)
  18. ? 18.018.1 Bean. W. Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement. Murray (1981-00-00)
  19. ? Sanders. T. W. Popular Hardy Perennials. Collingridge (1926-00-00)
  20. ? 20.020.120.2 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
  21. ? Chatto. B. The Dry Garden. Dent ISBN 0460045512 (1982-00-00)
  22. ? Thomas. G. S. Ornamental Shrubs, Climbers and Bamboos. Murray ISBN 0-7195-5043-2 (1992-00-00)
  23. ? 23.023.123.2 Thomas. G. S. Perennial Garden Plants J. M. Dent & Sons, London. ISBN 0 460 86048 8 (1990-00-00)
  24. ? Fernald. M. L. Gray's Manual of Botany. American Book Co. (1950-00-00)

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