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Yucca thompsoniana Trel.

Beaked yucca, Thompson’s yucca

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
GenusYuccaLinnaeus mistakenly derived the genus name from the Carib word for (similar-appearing) cassava, yuca
SpeciesthompsonianaFor Charles Henry Thompson (1870-1931)

About plant names...

Beaked yucca is a native of Texas.

Identification: Beaked yucca is a small tree 6-12′ (1.8-3.7 m) high and 6′ (1.8 m) wide, with a trunk that is sometimes branched. Leaves emerge in a spherical shape from the tips of the trunk(s), with dead leaves forming a skirt around upper portions of each trunk. The stiff leaves, narrow and swordlike, 8-24″ (20-60 cm) × ½″ (1.3 cm). Leaf edges are hard, pale yellow, often with fine teeth. Flowers are white, round to bell-shaped, on 2-3′ (60-91 cm) stalks above the leaf clusters. Seed capsules are 1-2″ (3-6 cm) long × ⅜-¾″ (1-2 cm) thick.

It is possible that the closely related Yucca ridigda is the same plant.

See the Yucca page for a comparison with other yuccas.

Online References:

The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center

Benny Møller Jensen's Denmark site, www.bennyskaktus.dk

Chris A. Martin's site at Arizona State University

Wikimedia Commons

Chihuahuan Desert Plants


Irish, Mary & Irish, Gary, Agaves, Yuccas and Related Plants: A Gardener’s Guide, Timber Press, 2000, p. 265 (here called Yucca rostrada)

Yucca rostrata Engelm. ex Trel.

Yucca rostrata Engelm. ex Trel. var. linearis Trel.


Yucca thompsoniana description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 25 May 2020.

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Yucca thompsoniana (beaked yucca, Thompson’s yucca)

2/24/2010 · San Diego (Quail) Botanic Garden, Encinitas, Cali­fornia

Yucca thompsoniana (beaked yucca, Thompson’s yucca)

5/25/2009 · Boyce Thompson Arboretum, Superior, Ari­zona

Range: Zones 7b-11:

About this map...