Growing and Caring For Yucca Elephantipes

Yucca elephantipes [YUK-uh, Ell-uh-fan-TY-peez] belongs to the family of Asparagaceae and is a native to Mexico. 

Yucca plant care is very easy and they need little maintenance. 

Yucca Elephantipes - soft tip yucca - growing indoors

It is mostly utilized as an indoor house plants and as a single or multi-stemmed succulent or even as a small tree and rarely as an outdoor plant. 

The common names for Yuccas include:

Yucca Elephantipes Care

Size & Growth

This is a narrow plant, which grows up to 20” inches, but it also has the ability to reach 15’ feet if grown for many years.  

Young plants are stemless rosettes of long, sword-shaped green leaves with pointed tips but aren’t overly sharp.

NOTE: Indoor yucca care is very much like Dracaena massangeana corn plant care or a Dracaena marginata care.

Flowering and Fragrance

The majority of the species of yucca plants produce bell-shaped flowers, which sit on top of the plant. 

However, when grown as an indoor plant, the chances of flowers blooming are rare. The yucca plant is mostly grown for its structural height and leaves instead of flowers. 

However, under the right conditions for several years, the giant yucca produces white flowers with a sweet fragrance. 

Light & Temperature

This plant loves the full sun and bright light. Place it near a south-facing window for optimal growth. 

The more light it gets, the better it will grow, so select its location accordingly. 

Yucca elephantipes will tolerate low light, but it slows new growth. Dark and too shady spots should be completely avoided. 

This plant tolerates a range of varying temperatures, but it prefers average room temperature. 

It also ideally grows during cooler temperatures, but it shouldn’t be lower than 45° degrees Fahrenheit (7° C). United States USDA hardiness zone 9 – 10.

Watering and Feeding

This plant requires moderate watering throughout the hotter months. 

When this plant is getting sufficient light and warmth, watering once a week would be enough for its smooth growth. 

Allow the soil to dry out between watering. Reduce the amount of water drastically during the winter months. 

Overwatering will lead to root rot and poor plant health.  

It doesn’t need much feeding, but feeding once a month is recommended during the growing season. 

Soil & Transplanting

Spineless Yucca prefers to grow in a well-draining potting mix.

If there is an issue with the drainage, the amend the soil with sand or perlite to enhance the drainage or transfer the plant to a different location with suitable drainage holes.

Avoid letting this plant sit in too wet soil as it causes growth problems. 

Grooming and Maintenance

Ensure the leaves are dusted regularly by gently wiping them with a clean damp cloth. 

Always wear gloves when cleaning the leaves, even though the leaves don’t have a sharp end, they can still hurt the skin.  

Prune dead or rotting flowers, stems, and wilting leaves immediately. 

If new plants are experiencing dead, withered, or yellow growth, it means the plant is getting insufficient water.

As new plants grow taller lower leaves will fall naturally. 

During the summer months and spring season, feed the indoor yucca water-soluble liquid fertilizer. 

How To Propagate Yucca – Spineless Soft-Tip

Propagate this plant by digging up the healthy yucca tree from the garden or indoor container. 

Gently remove all the excess soil from the root and continue shaking the plant or spraying the roots with water to clean it. 

Take a healthy, large shoot and cut about 2” – 6” inches using a sharp knife.

All the cuttings must be stored in a cool, dry place for about seven days. 

Once it is time for planting, place the cutting in a deep hole so the bottom few inches of the shoot’s end lies beneath the soil. 

Once the cutting is inserted in the hole, fill it with soil, and water deeply so the root system of the plant is established. 

There might be a need for extra irrigation in case the weather is very dry.

When repotting be careful not to disturb or damage the taproot.

Spineless Yucca Pest or Diseases

Infestation issues this plant might experience are:

  • Spider mites
  • Black weevil
  • Plant Scale
  • Moth borers which bore into the stems and roots. 

It is essential to eliminate the threat as soon as it is discovered. 

There aren’t any significant diseases issues for this plant, aside from root rotting when the soil is highly moist. 

There might be some leaf spot, but it is not a significant threat to the growth of this plant. 

Y. elephantipes is somewhat poisonous to humans, dogs, and cats. 

It protects itself through the pointy ends of its leaves, as well as the trunk’s hard bark, but if it is persistently damaged by children or pets, they might get exposed to the plant’s internal poisonous elements. 

Soft Tip Yucca Uses

Use Yucca cane as a ground planter or container plant. 

It looks good as an indoor plant and works great as buffer strips around highways or parking lots. 

It also works well alone on a patio or deck as a specimen plant.