Earlier descriptions of the fruit of Yucca brevifolia are reviewed. It is here shown that the fruit is a fleshy, sugar-rich berry that later becomes a hard, dry, spongy body. At no time are seeds released from the fruits without the exertion of an outside force. Various animals that might release seeds from the dry fruits are considered, as is wind that may disperse entire fruits. The question is introduced as to why Y. brevifolia Engelm. would expend large amounts of energy and resources to create a product for which there is no market. The appeal that the fruits may have had for now extinct megaherbivores is addressed. Finally, the possible future of the species is considered.
Lenz, Lee W.
"Seed Dispersal in Yucca Brevifolia (Agavaceae)-Present and Past, With Consideration of the Future of the Species,"
Aliso: A Journal of Systematic and Evolutionary Botany:
2, Article 3.
Available at: http://scholarship.claremont.edu/aliso/vol20/iss2/3
© 2001 Lee W. Lenz
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.