You come across Cordyline in southern Europe and south-east Asia, which means you can use this plant to create a tropical atmosphere in the garden or on your balcony.
Cordyline, also known as the cabbage palm, comes in small sizes for use in groups, and in larger sizes to place solo on the patio or balcony. The attractive leaf colour contrasts beautifully with the bright colours of perennials or annuals, or opt for more ton-sur-ton colour combinations. Cordyline can grow to a substantial size after a couple of years, whereby the rosette is then more or less on top of a trunk. The most common varieties are ‘Red Star’ (red leaves) and ‘Verde’ or ‘Peko’ (green leaves). There is also the variegated Cordyline australis ‘Variegata’. The plants are best used as a container plant which must overwinter frost-free and can be placed outdoors from March to November.
Cordyline originates from New Zealand and Australia. The second name, ‘australis’, points to its origin. Cordyline is a member of the Asparagaceae family, which also includes Dracaena and Yucca. The plant may resemble a palm, but has no family ties to the palms.
- Cordyline resembles Dracaena a lot, but the roots are different: Cordyline has tuberous thickened rhizomes and white roots. Dracaena’s roots are yellow or even orangey.
- In Great Britain and Ireland Cordyline is often used in gardens because of its attractive colour, tropical look and easy maintenance.