Yucca (Elephant foot) - Care tips

yucca banner

Yucca (Elephant foot)

Yucca plants are famous for their large, spiny leaves that grow on top of often long, thick woody stems. Yucca plants have the appearance of palm trees, so if you grow them indoors, you can create a tropical look.

There are almost 50 species of Yucca trees and shrubs. Although Yuccas are sometimes called a cactus species, they are not cacti but perennial evergreen shrubs and trees in the plant family Asparagaceae. The natural range of the Yucca genus, the 49 species and 24 subspecies, covers a vast area of the American continent.

Yucca Care Tips

Under the right conditions, Yuccas are not difficult to grow. They thrive better with a little neglect than with too much attention.

Light and placement for Yucca

Yucca plants are not very difficult, they even thrive in full sun indoors. They also do well in bright, indirect sun, although growing yuccas in too little light can result in thinner and slower growth. Yuccas are adapted to the desert, where daytime temperatures can rise to over 90 degrees. Therefore, Yuccas can also adapt well to most indoor temperature conditions and fluctuations.


Yuccas are very sensitive to over-watering. We therefore recommend that you water your plant regularly but carefully during the growing season (in spring and summer). Make sure that the plant has good drainage and dries out between watering. In winter, water your Yucca plant only once every few weeks (or even less). Check your plant's potting soil regularly.


During the growing season, fertilise your Yucca with liquid manure. Fertilising once a month is usually sufficient. In winter it is actually not necessary to fertilise your Yucca at all. PLNTS fertiliser should be perfect for your Yucca.


Propagating Yuccas

The easiest way to propagate a Yucca plant is via stem cuttings. Choose a stick of medium length and width for the best results. Avoid choosing a very young, thin stick or an older, thicker stick. Wear long sleeves and gloves when working near Yuccas to protect yourself from the prickly, dagger-like tips of the leaves that can occur in some species. Use a clean, sharp knife or pruning shears to cut one or more segments of about 6 centimetres from the trunk. Mark the part of the stem that grew closest to the base of the plant. This will help you plant the stem correctly; if you plant it upside down, it will not grow. Place the cuttings about 2 centimetres into the potting soil and make sure the base end is in the soil. Water the newly planted cuttings and keep the soil slightly moist for about four weeks while the roots form.

Most common pests on Yuccas

Although Yucca plants are not affected by many pests, there are a few typical culprits that you should keep an eye on. Mainly aphids and mealy bugs. Besides mild pest problems, yucca plants can be susceptible to fungal diseases, these problems manifest themselves with spreading black spots on the leaves. If you want to be sure about which pest or disease is bothering your plant and you want to know how to prevent it. Visit our PLNTS doctor page.

Is the Yucca toxic for pets or children?

Whether the Yucca - of whatever kind - is really poisonous or not is a matter on which experts are still divided. Many experts regard the plant as completely harmless, while others point to known cases of poisoning. We recommend that you be on the safe side and keep your pets and small children away from this plant. After all, you don't want them to eat your beautiful plant.

Buy your new Yucca at PLNTS.com

At PLNTS.com you can buy your new Yucca online. Whether you like your PLNTS big from the start or prefer to grow them from tiny BabyPLNTS into full-grown PLNTS - we’ve got you covered!

Hi, I'm Emma, your PLNTS.com guide!

Hi, I’m Emma, your PLNTS.com guide!