The love of exoticism is in our blood, and as soon as free space appears in the apartment, the landlady immediately has a desire to place some outlandish large-sized one there. Ideally, a palm tree. Well, or at least a false palm ...
So in our apartments there are dracaena and yucca.
By the way, do you know that a yucca can be grown not only indoors, but also in the garden? Suitable for this cold-resistant look yucca filamentous and its varieties.
What you need to know about yucca?
- What conditions of maintenance and what care is required for the plant?
- How can yucca be propagated at home?
- What problems may arise and how to solve them?
You will find answers to all these questions in our article.
Landing and caring for a yucca
- Blossoming: decorative-deciduous plant, at home does not bloom.
- Lighting: bright sunlight (near the south window). Daylight hours should be at least 16 hours, so in winter you will need additional artificial lighting.
- Temperature: in summer - usual for residential premises, in winter - not lower than 10 ˚C.
- Watering: plentiful, after drying of soil to a depth of 5-7 cm.
- Humidity: Any, but dry air is easier to carry.
- Top dressing: from April to August, once every 2-3 weeks, the yucca leaves are sprayed from the underside with a very weak (two times weaker than the manufacturers recommend) solution of complex mineral fertilizer.
- Rest period: from October to February.
- Transplant: in the spring, once every 2-4 years.
- Propagation: by seeds, apical cuttings, parts of the trunk.
- Pests: scale insects, spider mites, aphids, thrips.
- Diseases: stem and root rot, bacteriosis, gray and brown spots, bacterial burn.
Read more about growing yucca below
Yucca flower (lat. Yucca) belongs to the genus of evergreen tree plants of the Agave family, although not so long ago it was included in the Lileinidae subfamily. Sometimes the plant is called "palm yucca", although it has nothing to do with palm. In floriculture, trees such as yucca and dracaena are called false palms. The homeland of the Yucca is the arid regions of Mexico and Central America. All 30 species of plants are divided into two groups: stemless and tree-like. In nature, a tree-like plant yucca can grow up to 12 meters in height, a home yucca grows no higher than 2 m.
This is a beautiful, unpretentious tree to care for, which can serve as a worthy decoration of a large room or office. Sometimes yucca flowers are called “denim” because the first denim was made from their fibers.
Yucca flower - growing characteristics
Caring for a yucca palm tree will not require any major sacrifice. The only prerequisite for yucca in home gardening is good lighting. The homeland of the yucca plant is the desert and semi-desert areas where it grows under the sultry sun, so it is best to place it in the immediate vicinity of the south window, but if the west or east window is well lit, you can put the yucca near them.
The second distinctive feature of the plant is that yucca does not bloom at home, although in nature it blooms with large white bell-shaped flowers collected in panicles. If you arrange it for the winter in an insulated loggia, you may very well have a chance to see the yucca bloom: the laying of flower buds occurs only during a long stay in the cold.
If you are impatient, buy an adult plant right away, because yucca grows very slowly. However, keep in mind that yucca is popular, so it will cost you a lot of money.
The daylight of a yucca should last at least 16 hours, from which it follows that in winter it will be necessary to create artificial lighting for it.
In all other respects, caring for the yucca plant is simple, you can even forget about it for a while, and it will not die of it.
Homemade Yucca Care
How to care for yucca at home
So, you placed the yucca in a well-lit place where it will not yearn for the sunny climate of its homeland. As for watering, the main sign that it is time to moisten the soil is its drying to a depth of 5-7 cm. For watering five liters of soil in the summer, you will need about 1-1.25 liters of purified or at least standing water at room temperature. The rest of the year, water needs less, but you need to water it, focusing on the same sign - drying of the soil in a flowerpot to a depth of 5-7 cm.
If the ends of the leaves began to darken, it means that you pour too much water or water the plant too often, and this can lead to decay of the roots. At home, he prefers the temperature of yucca in the summer from 20 to 25 ºC, and in winter - not lower than 10 ºC, but without drafts.
Humidity does not excite the Yucca, but dry air is preferable to moist air. This does not apply to water-loving species of yucca, which are rare in culture, for which spraying is mandatory in the summer, and in the winter - a pallet with wet gravel.
Yucca is fed from April to August after two to three weeks with weak (two times weaker than recommended by the manufacturer) solutions of complex mineral fertilizers by spraying the underside of the leaves of the plant. The Belarusian fertilizer “Peat Oxidate” is well perceived by the plant. Do not fertilize immediately after a plant transplant or when the yucca is unhealthy.
Yucca is transplanted in the spring, if the plant has become small in its pot (this usually happens every 2-4 years) or has problems with the root system - there is rot, which must be removed immediately. The newly acquired yucca is also transplanted, giving her first a couple of weeks to adapt to the new conditions. How to transplant yucca? The initial planting of a yucca or its transplantation is preceded by the selection of the optimal soil composition for the plant.
We offer you such a simple but comfortable composition for yucca: one part of humus, compost, turfy land, sand or perlite. The acidity of the soil mixture should be between 5.5 and 7.5 pH. Alkaline soil does not allow the roots to absorb many trace elements. Test the soil: water during irrigation should pass through the soil in a matter of seconds and drain through the drainage hole. If the water is retained, then the soil for growing yucca is not suitable.
Get a deep, stable pot, pour a decent layer of expanded clay or fine gravel into it, then add some soil for yucca. If your yucca is healthy, just transfer it together with an earthen lump from the old container to the new one, add it to the voids of the soil and compact it.
If the plant suffers from rotting of the root system, you will first have to remove the rotten roots. To do this, let the soil in the pot with the yucca dry thoroughly, remove the yucca from the old pot, carefully shake the soil off the roots, inspect the roots and remove the diseased parts, sprinkling slices with powdered charcoal, then place the plant in a new pot with a drainage layer and fresh soil.
Yucca in winter
If in the winter time the yucca is in a hot room, and it also suffers from a short daylight, it grows: the leaves become thin, turn pale, fall and fall, due to weakening of the plant, harmful insects, various flower ailments begin to overcome it, and yucca can die. Therefore, caring for a yucca in winter consists of maintaining a cool indoor temperature and increasing daylight hours by additional artificial lighting, so that as a result, the light falls on the plant for at least 16 hours a day.
If you don’t have the opportunity to lower the temperature to a value that is comfortable for the yucca, you can move the plant itself. For example, for the winter, a yucca could be relocated to a well-insulated, but not heated balcony or loggia.
Propagation of Yucca by Seeds
Yucca is well propagated by seeds, which must be scarified before planting - damage the hard shell for faster seed germination. Do this by sawing the skin of a seed with sandpaper. Scarified seeds are sown in a light earthen mixture, consisting in equal parts of sand, leaf and turf soil, to a depth of 2-3 seed diameters and covered with glass or a transparent film. The sowing container is placed in a warm place (25-30 ºC) under bright diffused light. For ten days, the soil should be moist. Every day, the yucca's crops are aired, the film is shaken off, and the glass is wiped dry from condensation.
Shoots appear usually within a month. When the sprouts are let out in a pair of leaves, they are dived into one-hundred-gram disposable cups with soil of the same composition and after a week the first dressing is carried out with a solution of 1 g nitrophoska in 1 liter of water. Spend the next same dressing in two weeks. When the yucca forms 4-5 leaves, it is already considered old enough for ordinary care.
Propagation of yucca by cuttings
Yucca grows so slowly that a lot of time will pass from the time of sowing until it becomes a tree. How to propagate a yucca and still not wait so long for it to grow? Not much, but still faster, the process of growing yucca will go if you use the vegetative method of propagation by cuttings.
It is better to carry it out in the spring, before the start of active growth, but it is permissible to do this from March to August. A section of a yucca stalk is pre-dried for 12 hours somewhere in a cool shade, then, leaving only a couple of leaves on it, they are stuck in perlite to a depth of 3-4 cm and fixed vertically. The stem rooted 3-4 weeks in constantly wet perlite (this is important!) In bright ambient light and a temperature of 25-30 ºC. It is desirable to increase air humidity by periodic spraying.
Yucca propagation by parts of the trunk
When the yucca becomes too large for your room, you can make two or more smaller ones out of it. The top is cut with a sharp knife and, dusting the slices with powdered coal and drying for a couple of hours, they are rooted in boiled water, and after the roots appear, they are planted in the ground. If the trunk is too large, part of it can be cut off and placed in a pot, laid horizontally on wet sand and pressed lightly to it. Soon, sleeping kidneys will wake up and shoots with roots. You need to cut the yucca trunk into pieces according to the number of shoots, process the slices and plant the dividens in separate pots.
Treat the stump section from the divided trunk with charcoal and continue to care for this remainder of the yucca, as usual, only slightly reduce watering. Soon, fresh greens will appear on the stump.
Pests and diseases of yucca
Pests and possible Yucca diseases
Caterpillars, scale insects, spider mites, aphids, thrips and some other pests can appear on a yucca when it has health problems. Most often this happens with improper or excessive watering of the plant. Immediately eliminate the cause of the weakening of the Yucca immunity and treat the pests with systemic insecticides in accordance with the instructions.
A dysfunctional plant can also be affected by diseases, such as, for example, stem, root or bacterial rot, as well as gray and brown spots and bacterial burns. But you should know that the plant, which is properly looked after, is ill very rarely.
Yucca turns yellow
Many beginner gardeners are anxiously asking the question: "What if the yucca turns yellow?" It is possible that you were scared by the natural process of ridding the plant of lower leaves. But this is exactly how yucca grows up, so your anxiety is groundless. But sometimes experienced flower lovers, well aware that the yucca sheds its lower leaves, ask the same question (why does the yucca turn yellow?), Especially after the yellowness spots acquire an elliptical shape and then become brown. This type of plant acquires a disease with brown spotting. Treat your yucca, but first, eliminate the lack of care for it.
Yucca leaves dry
If the bottom leaves of the plant dry, then you should not worry - according to the natural course of things, the yucca is preparing to throw them off. If dryness and yellowness has covered those leaves that are higher, then this is a sign that the yucca is hot and not light enough. If the tips of the leaves dry, you will have to increase the humidity in the room and re-read the rules for watering the plant.
Yucca Leaves Fall
If these are not lower leaves, then the problem is most likely in improper hydration. Learn the rules of watering, correct mistakes and, if the root system has not died yet, the plant will gradually restore its appearance.
Why yucca doesn't bloom
Just as some animals do not breed in captivity, so the yucca does not bloom indoors. Almost never. In order for this to happen, it is necessary to create conditions as close to natural as possible, then she may make you happy by flowering her fragrant bell-shaped panicles.
Types of Yucca
Yucca aloe (Yucca aloifolia)
Perennial with an erect trunk and a rosette of xiphoid leaves at its apex. Leaves are strap-shaped or lanceolate, olive green up to 55 cm long, arranged in a spiral.
Yucca Elephant (Yucca elephantipes)
The most common species in floriculture. In places of natural habitat it is a very tall tree, the stem is thick and branched in the upper part, leaves 30-75 cm long and 5-8 cm wide are pointed at the top and taper to the base, xiphoid, green. In a room, a yucca of this kind grows to a meter and a half in height.
Yucca filamentous (Yucca filamentosa)
An almost stemless plant that grows horizontally due to root offspring. The root system is very deep, so this species is the most winter-hardy of all the others and can withstand frosts down to -20 ºC! Leaves up to 70 cm long, up to 4 cm wide, bluish-green in color, with a pointed apex and pubescent thin white curled threads. It has a variegated form with yellow-green or white-colored leaves.
Yucca Gray (Yucca glauca)
Also a stemless plant with narrow linear leaves up to 70 cm long with a bluish-green color with a light border and thin, sparse, curly threads along the edge of the leaf.
Most often, elephant yucca and aloe-yucca are grown in culture.