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Although their stiff evergreen rosettes are part of the scene in hot dry Central and North American scrublands, yuccas are hardier than they appear, and only fail in cold exposed inland positions, where they are better grown as container plants. Otherwise they are handsome architectural foliage plants for dry sunny borders and gardens by the sea. The Spanish dagger makes an impressive thick-stemmed plant, rarely branching and crowned with a thick clump of sharp-pointed leaves. Its eye-catching flower-spikes can reach 2.1m (7ft) high. The Royal Horticultural Society has given it its prestigious Award of Garden Merit (AGM).
Plant type: Evergreen shrub
Flower colour: White
Foliage colour: Mid-green
Sun exposure: Full sun
Hardiness: Half hardy
Skill level: Experienced
Time to plant seeds: March to May
Flowering period: July to August
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