Yuccas Every Year

They threatened to take over parts of our bit of flat land here in the cleft of the east escarpment that drains Floyd County to the west and north into the Roanoke River.

Ann loathes yuccas for their tenaciousness on “her field” of a half-acre, still referred to as Yucca Flats. I rather admire them for their aesthetics, their coevolutionary biology and for their pluck–a dessert denizen determined to live in a much colder, wetter place than their roots, genealogically speaking.

Every creamy white six-petaled blossom houses one or more yucca moths. I’ve told that story here before, and will pass you along for other tellers of the tale:

The Yucca and its Moth at Nature.org

Previous Fragments about Yuccas, and of course, other such stuff:

Yard Art: Yucca


Beauty and the Beast

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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  1. Sorry yuccas are a pesky thing. Are they considered an invasive? Or are they native to SW Va? I re-read you three links and saw my comments about how I love yuccas in our SW US deserts.