Indoor yucca - a less capricious alternative to palm trees care

Indoor yucca – a less capricious alternative to palm trees care

Austere and impeccable yucca is one of the safest candidates for interior decoration. This pseudo-palm tree is good both at home and in offices. Even with a modest size in her youth, she improves the air, subtly changes the atmosphere and surprises with the talent to visually expand the space. Yucca never gets in the way. And if it grows too large, it is easy to control. Powerful trunks and beautiful tufts of hard leaves are classics. And yucca care cannot be called anything other than traditional.

Indoor yucca is a less capricious alternative to palm trees. Farmer Blumenbüro Holland

Description of the plant

Yucca with her palm-shaped silhouettes is one of the most famous representatives of false palms. As a replacement for these classic and rather capricious giants and a pleasant modern alternative to the boring species, it is most often considered. Yucca present the Asparagus family (Asparagaceae).

Yucca (Yucca) – evergreen giants with a pronounced trunk and very showy leaves at the top. The height of the yucca ranges from 50 cm to several meters. Straight, rather thick and powerful trunks (in adult plants – from 5 cm) bear little resemblance to the graceful shoots of the main rivals of dracaena and cordilin.

The sharp edges of xiphoid, dense, pointed at the ends of yucca leaves up to 50 cm long often become an unpleasant surprise and can injure. The spiral arrangement of greenery in the sockets is not so easy to notice. Yucca leaves remain perfectly vertical and straight for a long time, but with age they begin to bend and droop. Dark shades of green only emphasize the flawless silhouettes.

Flowering is a virtue of garden, but not indoor, yuccas.

Types of room yucca

Only 2 types of yucca are grown in the rooms:

Yucca giant (Yucca gigantea, better known as vain elephantsYucca elephantipes) became famous for its powerful trunk and dark foliage sticking out in all directions.

Aloe leaf yucca (Yucca aloifolia) attracts primarily by the almost spherical shape of the rosette of leaves, decorated with hard thorns and denticles.

Yucca giganteaYucca gigantea. Farmer Elmer van Veen
Yucca aloifoliaYucca aloifolia. Farmer Philipp

Growing conditions for indoor yucca

Finding a suitable location for the yucca is not at all difficult. They are photophilous so much that they can even stand the direct sun without any problems, however, only adult plants (it is better to protect young yuccas from midday rays). They feel good in any brightly lit place and on any windowsill.

Almost all yuccas can grow in partial shade, but tend to stretch and age faster. For the winter, it is better to increase the lighting, preventing blanching of leaves and stretching of the trunks. Yuccas are also great at tolerating artificial light, which expands their use.

During the entire period of active growth, yucca is content with any room temperatures. It is better if the indicators exceed 20 degrees (but no heat). Any temperature is suitable for wintering yucca: plants cope equally well with indoor conditions and with coolness (up to 8 degrees Celsius). The optimal temperature is considered to be about 12 degrees (in warmth, yuccas are more sensitive to the reduction of light).

Yucca loves fresh air; she does not welcome drafts and sudden changes in temperature in the rooms. Plants will happily spend summer in the open air.

Yucca's summer will be happy to spend in the open airSummer yucca will be happy to spend in the open air. Farmer Vitamin G

Home care

Yucca is so easy to grow that you can handle it without much experience. The main advantage of yucca is its good adaptability and the ability to take mistakes without harming aesthetics.

Watering and air humidity

Yuccas don’t like frills. They can withstand short-term droughts without consequences, but the more regular watering, the better. The moisture content of the substrate should be kept moderate, allowing about a third of the soil in the pot to dry out. For the winter, watering is reduced in accordance with the temperatures.

Waterlogging, stagnant water are destructive at any time of the year. Yucca should not be watered with hard and cold water. Watering is best done carefully, along the edge of the pot. Do not soak the trunk and leaves during this procedure.

Good tolerance even to very dry air makes yucca stand out from other giants. It adapts perfectly to living rooms and offices and does not require any additional humidification measures, except for proximity to batteries and extreme heat, when it can be added to the usual spraying care. However, the plant does not tolerate the accumulation of dust and dirt. Gentle “wet” wiping of leaves or washing is a must for regular maintenance.

Top dressing and composition of fertilizers

Yuccas do not like an excess of fertilizers; with standard fertilizing, they grow so rapidly that they may not fit into the height of the ceiling. For yucca, it is enough to feed with a frequency of 3-4 weeks, with special fertilizers for decorative deciduous plants (or more frequent low-concentrated ones). In autumn and winter, fertilizing is applied once every 1 months, stopping them only when the temperature drops below 1,5 degrees.

Yuccas welcome foliar dressings, which can be alternated with classic liquid dressings.

Gentle "wet" wiping of leaves or washing is a must in the regular care of the yuccaGentle “wet” wiping of leaves or washing is a must in the regular care of the yucca

Pruning and shaping the yucca

Yuccas are easily controlled and contained. As soon as the plant goes beyond the desired framework, it is pruned, rerooting the tops or forming multi-stem silhouettes. Cutting trunks at the desired height can be carried out at any time during active growth, although spring cuttings still root more easily. Do not throw away the remaining trunk: even from very old, and seemingly completely lignified shoots, new shoots will begin to develop over time from hidden buds.

During any manipulations with yucca, you should handle it carefully, because it is very easy to get hurt on the leaves. After essential care procedures, it is better to arrange for the yucca to adapt – to shade the plants, keep them in a stable heat, but not in the heat and not in direct sunlight.

You should not cut off wilting and naturally yellowing leaves: it is better for the plant to be allowed to drop them on its own.

Read also our article 5 of the most unpretentious indoor palms.

Transplant, containers and substrate

Yucca can be grown as single plants or in groups – several specimens in one pot. You should not rush to replant Yucca in early spring: the best time for this culture is April, but you can also transplant in summer.

Any loose, nutritious substrate with at least a third of the sand is suitable for yucca. Air permeability can be increased with an additional portion of perlite, coconut fiber, vermiculite. Yuccas do well in hydroponics.

A high drainage must be laid at the bottom of the containers. When transplanting a yucca, you should not compact the soil too much and allow unnecessary contact with the roots. The size of the containers and the limitation of transplants can limit growth. If you need to restrain the yucca during transplanting, you can also shorten the roots by a quarter of the length, processing the slices. It is impossible to deepen the yucca too much, lowering the base of the trunk.

Yucca should not be watered immediately after transplanting with the same frequency. The plant is easily moisturized until growth resumes, avoiding dampness, and also protected from direct sun and heat.

When transplanting yucca to the bottom of the containers, a high drainage must be laidWhen transplanting yucca to the bottom of the containers, a high drainage must be laid

Diseases, pests and problems in yucca cultivation

Yuccas are nearly invulnerable, but can still suffer from scale insects, felt insects, and spider mites. Washing in combination with insecticide treatments can quickly deal with this problem.

Leaf state changes are always indicative of problems. In the cold, the leaves curl and fall off, when waterlogged, they wither, when dry and in heat, they dry out from the tips, and in direct sun they become covered with white spots.

Read also our article 4 indoor palm trees are not for everyone.

Yucca breeding

Yucca is the queen of stem cuttings. The tops and stems are easily rooted in it, which can be cut even into very short stumps with 1-2 buds. Slices must be treated with any disinfectant. New leaves grow along the edge of the cutting, from the upper buds. Therefore, by adjusting the height of the shoots, you can also control the height of the future plant. Cuttings root perfectly in the substrate even without a cap. They only need stable heat and light humidity (temperature about 25 degrees).

Occasionally, yuccas are also grown from seeds. Light moisture, deep sowing and stable heat are sufficient for germination.

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Anna Evans

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