The Unlikely Yucca

The yucca keeping me in suspense

The yucca keeping me in suspense

For reasons now inexplicable to me, I’d decided it was a good idea to put a yucca plant in my circle garden when, after receiving my very first gardening catalogue, I went on a manic spend-and-plant spree. I planted it in 2005 even though a plant typically associated with the desert (at least by everyone I’ve told about it) was a strange choice for a Wisconsin Amish-country garden.

For reasons equally inexplicable to me, it survived despite receiving almost no care. It spent its first seven years as a nondescript clump of pointy leaves; I’d even considered taking it out but was too lazy. My sloth was fortuitous, though, because this year the yucca bloomed for the first time. It sent up three stalks taller than I am and taunted me with tightly closed buds for a week or two. I had a vague notion that it would have white bell-shaped flowers, but I wasn’t sure. I could have just looked on-line for a picture of a blooming yucca, but A) the sloth was at play and B) I wanted to be surprised.

The blooms finally came and were definitely worth the eight-year wait; they were resplendent during the day, luminous in the moonlight. The flowers are still clinging gamely to their spires, but the peak has passed, and I suspect they won’t be there much longer. I’d like to immortalize (well, cyber-ize, anyway) the blooms so I’ll never forget the moments of unexpected beauty they gave me.

The yucca in long-awaited bloom.

The yucca in long-awaited bloom.



  1. One of the first plants we saw here was a yucca plant. “Here” is the Monterey Peninsula in CA for the week. Taking a break from hot, Florida weather.

    Apparently, you have just the right touch, Rebecca! The blooms are perfect. You go, girl.

    1. Thanks for the compliment on my trooper of a yucca! The blooms faded away, and I finally had to give in and cut down the sad, blossomless stalks, but I’m glad I got the documentation of its first flowering. Here’s hoping for a repeat performance next year… I hope all is well with you and that your sojourn in California is rejuvenating, heat or no heat! > Date: Thu, 1 Aug 2013 07:51:09 +0000 > To: >

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