Opening/Closure Status

The grounds of the USBG will be closed September 18, 2021. On other days, all outdoor gardens are currently open. The Conservatory and public restrooms remain closed, due to the closure of the U.S. Capitol campus buildings. Please monitor www.USBG.gov for updates on operating status. USBG resources can be accessed online, including educational materials, virtual tours, and online programs by visiting www.USBG.gov/AtHome.

Dragon tree

Dragon tree
Plant Botanical Name: 
Dracaena draco
USBG Plant Location: 
Conservatory
Conservatory Room Location: 
World Deserts
Plant Threat Level: 
Vulnerable

Dracaena draco, or dragon tree, is a very vulnerable plant found only in (endemic to) the arid, rocky mountain ranges of the Canary Islands, Madeira and Cape Verde. Though the dragon tree is now a common houseplant and garden specimen, there are very few naturally occurring individuals remaining in its narrow ecological range. The dark red sap of Dracaena draco was regarded for centuries in European legends as "the blood of dragons," and was often used for its supposed magical and medicinal qualities. This resin is still used today to produce incense and varnishes used to stain and polish wood, including that of Stradivarius violins.