As its common name suggests, yucca schidigera
is primarily a plant of the Mojave Desert, but its range extends into the southern tip of the Great Basin Desert, the west edge of the Sonoran Desert and the coastal mountains of southwest California; it may be seen in such places as Anza Borrego Desert State Park
, Joshua Tree National Park
and Mojave National Preserve
The Mojave yucca resembles the banana yucca
, which inhabits part of the same range; the main difference is the leaf color, which is yellowish green cf. bluish green for yucca baccata. Leaves of yucca schidigera are thick and rigid, strongly curved in cross section (concave on top, convex underneath), up to 50 inches long and between 1 and 2 inches across. Leaf edges have a sparse lining of thick white curly filaments. Mature plants form a trunk, and branch, eventually growing up to 8 stems. The wide flower cluster is borne on a short stalk, not rising very far above the top of the leaves.