Friday, April 5, 2013

Our Lord's Candle--Hesperoyucca whipplei

Our Lord's Candle is beginning to bloom again at the UC Botanical Garden. The buds are more amazing than the flowers! Here is a previous blog entry with the same species in full bloom:

This plant has several common names. It is known as Chaparral Yucca, Foothill Yucca, Common Yucca, Spanish Bayonet, and Our Lord's Candle. I find it interesting that it is named after both a weapon and a sacred object. The leaves are narrow and sharp and do look like knives or perhaps the blade of a bayonet. And the creamy flowers on the tall stalk do remind me of candle. So, I guess it makes sense. Similar species that grow in the Midwest are called "Ghosts in the Graveyard" because it grows wild in rural cemeteries and the pale flowers on the stalk look like an apparition.

Perhaps this would be a good plant for the sacred plants tour.

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