This Months: Plant In Profile

Originally from Mexico, it seems to be the lesser known of the Beschorneria. There is also the popular blue foliage Beschorneria yuccoides which is commonly called Mexican Lily.

B. septentrionalis is an erect growing plant and can reach the ultimate height of 1.5m after 15 years. The smooth strap shaped leaves will spread up to one metre across. From the centre of the perennial green leaves arises a spike of red growth in late spring which grows up to 1.2 metres and carriers cardinal red flowers with a touch of soft green on the ends of the buds. Occasionally it will fruit in autumn, mimicking the colour of the flower.

Drought tolerant, it sees off the summer dryness readily with a couple of drinks. It is far less tolerant of badly drained wet conditions where drowning is far more likely. Positioning of this plant is adaptable, suitable in sun to semi shade and in a range of soil types.

It does however, like to be well feed and responds best when planted in a sheltered position. The plant structure of the B. septentrionalis has great impact by its self. Used on mass it is striking and planted in a container it is bold enough to be impressive.

The plant has a wide variety of use with the designed garden as it is complimentary to other plants as well as a successful stand alone specimen.