Yucca brevifolia is an indicator plant for the Mojave desert and
has a National Park named after it. Large specimens grow up to 10m tall and branches bend down or stick out at odd angles.
Click on thumbnails for larger images.
The inflorescence is a short panicle of greenish-white bells held close to the foliage. The flower petals often don't open properly. Flowers are said to have a slightly unpleasant perfume, although it's not easy to get near enough to find out. Several varieties of Yucca brevifolia have been described, although considerable variation in growth is seen between individuals in most populations.
Yucca brevifolia is tolerant of cold but not of damp, so only really suitable for landscaping in a really dry climate. However, Joshua Trees are great survivors in otherwise inhospitable locations across parts of Nevada, Arizona and California. This page gathers together images of Joshua Trees from a variety of locations hundreds of miles apart, travelling approximately North to South.