Hi, I moved into a new house and there is an Adam’s Needle (I think) that bloomed last summer. This year it did not bloom at all but did grow a shoot. How should I take care of it over winter so that it can hopefully flower next year?
Congratulations on your new house and new garden! I commend you on taking interest in your new plants and wanting to care for them.
Adam’s Needle, also known as Yucca filamentosa, is a slow-growing broadleaf evergreen succulent which typically bloom from June up to September. The flower stalks can grow up to 5 or 8 feet high, developing creamy-white bell-shaped flowers. It is related to many other commonly grown cacti and succulents and is in the asparagus family.
Yucca is considered a low maintenance plant as it does not require a lot. It is often used in rock gardens where the soil is not heavily nutrient or moisture rich. One thing that is suggested to to remove spent blooms/stalks from the previous growing season as this will encourage new growth the following season. Make sure you are wearing gloves when pruning as the foliage can be sharp. If you wish, in the spring you can add some phosphorus-rich fertilizer or bone meal to the soil to encourage flowering.
Finally, if your plant is still not flowering, it may need to be hand pollinated. Yucca’s flowers bloom at night which attracts the plants’ only pollinator, the yucca moth. You can learn more about this process here https://www.thespruce.com/all-about-hand-pollination-5224790
Good luck with your garden and I hope you have lots of showy blooms.