For the first time since we planted rostratas in our fields 5 years ago, we have a few that are blooming!    IMG_9270

The flower spikes are less structured than other  Yuccas but the petals are large, airy, and quite striking.    With Spanish Dagger (Yucca trucleana), the trunk tends to split into a double trunk after blooming and drying naturally.    If the blossom is cut fresh to be eaten the trunk will not divide into a double.  We planned to see if this is the case with Yucca rostrata until we did a little  looking and learned these two things

  1. After blooming the flower stem falls off the plant, leaving an open wound on the trunk which either scars or, in wet weather, rots.
  2. The rostrata is pollinated by the yucca moth.   That moth is not located in the Rio Grande Valley (at least not in great numbers) so our chance of getting seed from a dried bloom stem is extremely low.

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But isn’t the bloom beautiful?    This one is about two weeks old.   I have not noticed any pollinator or bird activity around it.   Mockingbirds are often seen singing and snacking at the top of Spanish dagger plumes (Yucca trucleana).    I would think that this bloom would taste pretty similar.

We decided that in order to protect the rostratas from scarring and rot, our best strategy will be to remove each bloom stem at this stage – shortly after  they appear.   IMG_8764

Their symmetry, beautiful blue-grey color and graceful movement in the slightest of breezes makes up for us missing out on their flowers.

 

 

 

 

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