Cordyline terminalis – CORDYLINE

The Cordyline is a showy foliage plant. It has long, flat leaves variegated in green and cream with red veins. It cannot be described as an easy plant to keep. It needs some space and is not always suitable for grouping with other plants.

Where to position: A good light position, not in direct sunlight. It dislikes draughts and temperature changes.

Watering requirements: Tepid rainwater to maintain a moist springy soil condition; good cordylinedrainage is important. Always water on the soil. Mist-spray daily and gently sponge the leaves if they appear dusty or dull. The plant likes high humidity.

General care: Feed weekly with weak liquid fertilizer. No stopping or pruning needed but re-pot when the plant becomes cramped.

Rest: There is no marked rest period. Growth will slow in colder weather. Maintain soil moisture and stop feeding until warmer weather speeds up growth.

When it looks sick:

  • Plant loses lower leaves : The humidity is insufficient. The plant flags : This can result from over- or under-watering or poor drainage. Check the soil condition. Ensure good drainage.
  • The plant pales and tends to flag : Stop feeding. Ensure that it is not subjected to draughts or temperature changes.
  • Plant looks tired and dull : Mist-spray regularly and sponge the leaves gently.


  • Growing season 15-22 °C (60-72 °F)
  • Minimum winter 10-13°°C (50-55 °F)

Soil: A soil-less compost.

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