Joshua-tree meaning

A tall branching yucca plant (Yucca brevifolia) of the southwest United States, having large clusters of greenish-white flowers.
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A tree (Yucca brevifolia) of the agave family, found in the SW U.S. and characterized by branches that are extended grotesquely like upraised arms and by dagger-shaped, spine-tipped leaves.
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A yucca, Yucca brevifolia, of the southwestern U.S., with spiky leaves.
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Origin of joshua-tree

  • Probably after Joshua from the resemblance of the tree's greatly extended branches to Joshua's outstretched arm as he pointed with his spear to the city of Ai (Joshua 8:18)

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • Apparently from the resemblance of the tree to Joshua holding out his spear.

    From Wiktionary