Beaucarnea recurvata aka Beaucarnea guatmalensis

Beaucarnea recurvata is a large tree-like evergreen caudiciform perennial with narrow, tough, grass-like long leaves arranged in recurved drooping tufts at the tops of branches.

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Beaucarnea recurvata aka Beaucarnea guatmalensis

  • Names and Synonyms:  
    Nolina recurvata, Dasylirion recurvatum
  • Common Names:  
    Ponytail Palm, Elphant's Foot, Bottle Palm
  • Family:  
    Nolinaceae
  • Origin:  
    It is native to the states of Tamaulipas, Veracruz and San Luis Potosí in eastern Mexico.
  • Height:  
    30'-50'
  • Width:  
    10-15'
  • Cold Tolerance:  
    25 to 30°F; -3.9 to -1.1°C
  • Heat Tolerance:  
    Extremely heat tolerant
  • Light Requirement:  
    Full sun to light shade
  • Water needs:  
    Very drought tolerant, but the plant grows faster with some irrigation. Avoid watering in cool, damp weather.
  • Maintenance:  
    Older dead leaves can be removed to reveal more of the trunk if desired.
  • Uses:  
    In frost-free, or near frost free climates this plant's large caudex makes a dramatic display when grouped with boulders in large rock gardens. Also interesting when grown with similar grass-tree type plants. In cooler climates it is happy as an excellent, care-free and long-lived container plant. If placed outside in summer, be sure to bring it inside before temperatures drop below 40°F.
  • Propagation:  
    Seeds can be collected and sown. This plant is dioecious and both male and female specimens are required to set seed. Longer branched stems can be cut and rooted by dipping them in rooting hormone and potting them up in very fast-draining soil.
  • Problems:  
    Root and crown fungal rots in poor draining, wet soils, especially in cool, damp weather. If a larger plant is damaged by frost, stop watering until warmer dry weather returns and immediately remove all damaged leaf portions. Mealybugs and cochineal insects are an occasional problem on overwatered plants. Salt-sensitive
  • Special notes:  
    B. recurvata is a slow growing, evergreen perennial with narrow, tough, grass-like 2-5' long leaves arranged in recurved drooping tufts at the tops of branches. The plant stores water in a large caudex base. Care should be taken not to damage the base as scars remain on it for the life of the plant. Larger, in ground plants will flower after about 10 years of age and have 3 foot panicles of small off white flowers similar to most plants in the nolinacea family. As the plant matures it may begin to branch creating several trunks off the large caudex base.