Apartment plants

Sick yucca

Question: sick yucca

A couple of months ago I found parasites on the leaves of the plant that I treated with an insecticide. However after a short time the leaves or all the stems have bent. I brought the plant outdoors but without success. What should I do?

Answer: sick yucca

Dear Rita,
the yucca is a plant native to the American continent; many species live in arid places, and for this reason they bear the warm and dry climate present in the house; in reality they are plants that bear even very low temperatures, close to -10 ° C, and therefore in Italy they could be grown in the garden, as is already the case in many cases. They are majestic plants, the varieties with stems can become real trees. I do not know if the decay of your plant is directly linked to the infestation of insects, more than anything else it is probable that the stress due to the presence of insects then caused a lower capacity of your plant to withstand adverse weather conditions. Typically, the folded and mushy stems are typical of a water problem, in the case of yuccas (plants that can survive several weeks without watering) it is usually a problem related to excess watering. Consider that your plant in nature lives in an arid or semi-arid place, like cacti; what it needs is sporadic watering, to be provided only when the ground is definitely very well dry. In winter, if the plant lives at home, avoid leaving it completely dry for months, but water it with small amounts of water, only sporadically, like once every 15-20 days. In the spring and summer months the watering will be more consistent, but also in this case it avoids leaving the soil soaked with water: always wait for the substratum to be perfectly dry between two waterings. If you are not sure, dip two fingers in the ground, if it is fresh and moist, return watering. If your yucca was on the terrace in the spring, the heavy rains, combined with the particularly cool climate, may have damaged your health, because in spring 2013 it really rained a lot. Now it would be the case to repot the plant, with fresh and very well drained soil, avoiding putting it in an excessively large pot; or you can place it in full ground, in a well-lit area of ​​the garden, even in full sun. Considering that your plant has spent several months indoors, remember to move it outdoors with caution, placing it in the sun gradually, or you risk finding it burned by the sun's rays.