Yucca gloriosa L.
Synonym : Yucca acutifolia Truff.
Family : Agavaceae
Local Names : Spanish Dagger
Flowering and fruiting period: April – June
Distribution: Native of America
Habitat: Grown as garden plants
IUCN status: Data Deficient
Uses: Fruit edible raw or cooked. The fruit is very rarely produced in the wild. Flowers edible raw or cooked. They are delicious raw, and can also be dried, crushed and used as a flavouring. Flowering stem - cooked and used like asparagus. Root - cooked. It can be dried, ground into a powder and made into a bread. The rhizomes are used for the production of 'Costa Rica arrowroot'. The fruit is purgative. The fruit has a laxative effect. The root is detergent. The plant is grown as a living fence. A fibre obtained from the leaves is used for making cloth, ropes, baskets and mats. The roots are rich in saponins and can be used as a soap substitute.
Key Characters: Tall stemless or shortly trunked. Leaves lanceolate, yellow edged, flat with raised margins, apices sharp pointed, red. Inflorescence an erect, large panicle with alternating branches. Flowers hermaphrodite, creamy-white, produced in profussion on a solitary, drooping, bell-shaped and as large as a hen's egg. Perianth-lobes waxy. Stamens 6, embracing the ovary. Style connate forming a central canal; stigmas 3, each bilobed forming a stigmatic chamber below.