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Genus Cordyline (Cabbage palm, Cabbage tree)

Cordyline Cordyline australis 'Purple Tower' Photo/Illustration: Michelle Gervais
kor-dih-LYE-nee Common Name: Cabbage palm, Cabbage tree
The genus Cordyline is comprised of 15 species of evergreen shrubs and tree-like, woody perennials from Southeast Asia and the Pacific. The larger perennials resemble palm trees. Long, leathery leaves are produced in tufts or rosettes. Flowers are cup-shaped and sweet-smelling, sometimes produced in large terminal panicles. Round white, red, blue, or purple berries follow. Cabbage palms are good as houseplants or grown in a greenhouse. In warmer areas, they can be used as specimen plants, in a border, or in a courtyard garden.
Noteworthy characteristics: Leathery, lance-shaped leaves. Fragrant flowers.
Care: In the garden, grow in fertile, well-drained soil in full sun or partial shade. Under glass, grow green-leaved species in full light and species with colored foliage in bright filtered or indirect light. Water sparingly in winter.
Propagation: In spring, sow seed at 61°F or remove well-rooted suckers.
Problems: Cabbage palms are prone to scale insects, spider mites, and mealybugs, while bacterial and fungal spots, bacterial soft rot, and root rot can also occur.  

Species, varieties and cultivars for genus Cordyline

Cordyline hybrida var. JURred 'Festival™ Burgundy' Cordyline hybrida var. JURred 'Festival™ Burgundy'
(Festival™ Burgundy corydaline)
(1 user review)
Hardiness Zones: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11

This basal branching cordyline combines the rugged easy-care attributes of its cordyline cousins with an unusual mix of shiny dark color, compact bushy form, short stems and cascading grass-like leaves.

Cordyline australis 'Purple Tower' Cordyline australis 'Purple Tower'
(Giant dracaena, New Zealand cabbage palm)
(1 user review)
Hardiness Zones: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11

'Purple Tower' is a cultivar of the New Zealand native cabbage tree, frequently grown in greenhouses, as houseplants, or as large accent plants outdoors. It is hardy to Zone 10. The narrow, plum-purple leaves reach 3 feet long. The fragrant white flowers are small, but they are borne in large panicles in spring and early summer on mature plants. Plants grown in containers only rarely flower, however. Young plants are often sold as houseplants. Mature specimens have thick trunks with foliage at the top, resembling a palm tree. They are striking container specimens and can be plugged into a summer border. The species has naturalized in portions of California and the southern U.S.