Natives of Mexico and the American Southwest, both Yucca and Agave plants belong to the family of Agavaceae. Their leaves grow in a spiral pattern out from the centre forming a ‘rosette’ structure.
One of the differences between the two is that over time Yuccas will grow taller whereas the Agave only gets bigger.
This Yucca was growing in the hot dry climate of the Saguaro National Park in Arizona – that’s a Saguaro cactus peeking out of the bottom left.This ancient Agave is in amongst the ruins of a church in Zacatecas, Mexico.
Yuccas are less fleshy than Agaves and generally less spiny.
Yuccas survive in colder wetter climates than the Agaves.
Yuccas typically bloom every year with bell-shaped blossoms while many Agaves bloom only once and then die, and the flower has a very different shape.
The Yucca ‘group’ features about 40 species, whereas the Agaves number around 300 species.
- More of the Daily Post’s Weekly Photo Challenge: Variations on a Theme.
- More of Nancy Merrill’s Photo a Week Challenge: Structure in Nature.
With her photo challenge: Structure in Nature, Nancy started me writing a post on the rosette structure in plants. While putting together the post I realized that I had mislabelled many of my photos and ended up googling a lot of different plants to determine the differences. I didn’t manage to finish all of them but this is one of many!