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Dasylirion texanum Scheele

Texas sotol, green sotol, sotol

KingdomPlantaePlants, but not fungi, lichens, or algae
SubkingdomTracheobiontaVascular plants—plants with a “circulatory system” for delivering water and nutrients
DivisionMagnoliophytaFlowering plants, also known as angiosperms
ClassLiliopsidaMonocots (plants with a single seed leaf); includes the lily family
SubclassLiliidaeIncludes lilies, orchids, and many others
OrderAsparagalesA diverse group that includes asparagus
FamilyAsparagaceaeAgaves, asparagus, hyacinths, and others
GenusDasylirionFrom dasy-, ancient Greek δασύς (dasús, “hairy”); and Greek leirion, “lily”
SpeciestexanumOf or from, or somehow relating to, Texas

About plant names...

Texas sotol is aptly named, confined to southern and western Texas and part of northern Mexico. "Sotol" is the Spanish name for "desert spoon," a related plant, Dasylirion wheeleri; it is also the name for a distilled spirit made from the baked and fermented bulbs of this plant. Depending upon where you look, sotols are a member of family Asparagaceae or Liliaceae.

Identification: Texas sotol has a rounded base of stiff, light green, grasslike leaves, each only ½″ (1.3 cm) wide and up to 3′ (91 cm) long. Grasslike in shape, that is: the leaves have sharp spines along their margins. The base of each plant looks similar enough to yuccas so they are often confused for yuccas. Extending upward 9-15′ (2.7-4.6 m) is a striking flower stalk, the top 2-3′ (60-91 cm) of which are yellow (or white?) flowers. Male flowers appear on separate plants than do female flowers, making Texas sotol dioecious.

Online References:

Native Plants of Texas


The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center

Plants for a Future, a resource and information centre for edible and otherwise useful plants



Dasylirion texanum description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 25 May 2020.

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Dasylirion texanum (Texas sotol, green sotol, sotol)

8/30/2014 · Walatowa Visitor Center, Pueblo of Jemez, New Mex­ico

Dasylirion texanum (Texas sotol, green sotol, sotol)

1/15/1996 · Fort Davis, Texas · By Constance B. Kent

Dasylirion texanum (Texas sotol, green sotol, sotol)

1/15/1996 · Fort Davis, Texas · By Constance B. Kent

Range: Zones 8b-10:

About this map...