equal time

June 04, 2023  •  3 Comments

On 14 March 1927, House Bill # 371 officially declared the yucca (Yucca glauca) the New Mexico state flower.  I am the first to admit my time photographing the impressive flower stalks is limited.  But after spending a good chunk of time photographing columbines, the Colorado state flower, I thought it was appropriate to give our state flower equal time.  Viewing, researching, and photographing them - close and personal - resulted in some true appreciation for the people who chose to add the yucca to our state symbology.  Researching the botanical family for the yucca was a bit of a rabbit hole, however.  In years past, the yucca was considered part the the lily (Liliaceae) family, but now a group of new families in the old lily family have emerged.  From what I gather, it is now considered part of the Agavaceae family, a group of plants that over the millennia have been used for everything from shampoo and soap, to shoes and tequila.  Apparently, every part of a yucca is edible, except for the roots.  

The flower stalks of the yucca go through quite an evolution before coming to full bloom.  Emerging from the bottom of the plant, surrounded by green leaf spikes, they look like alien creatures.

The brown/burgundy color begins to lighten as the blooms start to open.


Thread-like filaments curling along the leaves' edges are pure design.


The blooms are quite delicate and lovely, counterpoints to the needle-sharp leaves.

Yucca blooms have a sheen that makes them look like ripe fruit.

I must include here the mammoth bloom stalk of an agave plant I noticed for the first time this morning.  Watching it evolve is going to be very interesting!


Thanks to all of you who commented on my Memorial Day blog and the meaning of the day, including Victoria, Barbara F. R., David O., Phyllis, Jean & Sam, Connie, Brenda, Ann A., Sara, Earle, Orlando, Steve, and Ingrid.  

until next Monday,


a passion for the image©




Steve Immel(non-registered)
Firstly, I didn't know that the yucca was part of the agave family. The burgundy stalk pointing out of the plant in your last photograph proved that it is. The evolution of the plant is fun to see. What happens to the stalk? I've seen many agaves in Mexico., but don't recall the prominent stalk. The closed blooms have a color and sheen like a pippin apple while the opening blooms are the color of a Vidalia onion. Do we know if a liquor can be made from the yucca?

I'd like to see what happens to the stock.
Ann Alexander(non-registered)
That agave growth looks awfully familiar. It seems to grow a foot each day. Thanks to you, I now appreciate the beautiful yucca!
Fred Barraza(non-registered)
Beautiful images. Beautifully captured.
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