Ajuntament de Barcelona

Dasylirion serratifolium

Mossèn Costa i Llobera Garden

    Spanish name: 
    English name: 
    Sandpaper sotol
    Species characteristics
    Oaxaca (Mexico)
    Desertic and mountainous areas

    Plant, with a very short sterm or without it, measuring up to 1.8 m in diameter.

    The leaves are very long and narrow (up to 1 m long and 1.5-3 cm wide), rough and greyish-green. Their apex is fibrous and the margins are  finely jagged and have yellowish curved prickles, about 3 mm long, and 2-3 cm apart.

    The flowers appear intoinflorescences 30-40 cm tall, although sometimes they can reach 1 m.

    The fruits are almost globose capsules, about 0.7 cm in diameter.

    Flowering time: 
    Uses and properties: 

    Leaves of this plant are used in popular culture to make baskets, hats and strings.

    Sandpaper stool and some other plants from the same family are used in making a liqueur called Sotol.

    History and curiosities: 

    The genus name Dasylirion comes from the Greek δάσυ, “dense, thick”, and λείριον, “lily”, alluding the compact disposition of the flowers at the inflorescence. The Latin term serratifolium, “with serrate leaves”, coming from serratus, “serrate”, and folia, “leaf”, refers to the leave form.

    For further information: 

    LÓPEZ GONZÁLEZ, Ginés A. Los árboles y arbustos de la Península Ibérica e Islas Baleares. (2 vol.) Madrid: Mundi-Prensa, 2001

    THE ROYAL HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY. Enciclopedia de plantas y flores. Barcelona: Grijalbo, 1996