Tuesday, November 15, 2016


A small genus of plants related to the Yuccas.

Xerophyllum asphodeloides ( Mountain Asphodel )
Also called Eastern Turkeybeard. A rhizomatous, evergreen perennial, reaching up to 5 feet in height, that is native to dry pine-oak woods in the Appalachian Mountains and sandy pine barrens in New Jersey and Delaware. It was originally native from eastern Kentucky to New Jersey ( excl Pennsylvania ); south to northern Alabama and northern Georgia ). It has declined considerably due to habitat destruction and is now extinct in Kentucky, Maryland and Delaware.
The toothed, linear leaves, up to 20 x 0.1 inches in size, form a dense clump.
The creamy-white flowers, up to 0.6 inches wide, are borne on long inflorescences up to 12 inches in length. The total flower structure including the stalk can reach up to 5 feet high. It may take up to a decade or more for a plant to bloom for the first time.
Hardy zones 6 to 8 in full sun to partial shade on sandy, well drained soil.

* historic archive photo

Xerophyllum tenax ( Bear Grass )
A perennial, reaching up to 2 feet in height, that is native to slope grassland and open woods in western North America ( from Vancouver Island to Nelson, British Columbia; south to central California...also in Idaho, western Montana and northwest Wyoming ). It's underground rhizomes often survive fires then resprout vigorously.
The leaves, up to 40 x 0.2 inches in size, are silvery-green at first, later deepening to green.
The white flowers, up to 0.8 inches wide, are borne on plumes up to 6 ( rarely over 4 ) feet high during late summer. The individual flower plumes are up to 2 feet long.
Hardy zones 4 to 9 in full sun to partial shade on just about any well drained soil.

* photo taken by A.C. Jackson @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database


* historical archive photos

1 comment:

  1. I have seen these plants in the mountanious areas. I used to think that these are just wild shrubs but now came to know that they are not.