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Products > Phormium 'Maori Sunrise'
Phormium 'Maori Sunrise' - New Zealand Flax

Note: This plant is not currently for sale. This is an archive page preserved for informational use.  

Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Perennial
Family: Phormiaceae (~Xanthorrhoeaceae)
Origin: New Zealand (Australasia)
Evergreen: Yes
Flower Color: Insignificant
Bloomtime: Infrequent
Synonyms: [P. 'Rainbow Sunrise', P. 'Sunrise']
Height: 2-3 feet
Width: 2-3 feet
Exposure: Cool Sun/Light Shade
Seaside: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 15-20 F
Phormium 'Maori Sunrise' (New Zealand Flax) - A medium sized slightly arching plant to 3 feet tall with leaves 3-4 feet long and 1 1/2 inches wide. Central new growth color is salmon pink fading to pale yellow with a narrow bronze-green band along the leaf margin. Plant in full sun to light shade. Can tolerate fairly dry conditions (coastal) but looks best with occasional to regular irrigation. Hardy to 15-20 F. Possibly root hardy below these temperatures but with severe foliage damage unless protected. A beautiful plant but we found that it got larger than previously described and had a strong tendency to revert to bronze - we discontinued growing it in 1993. It is similar in color to Phormium 'Flamingo', a plant we also used to grow. 'Maori Sunrise' was the first of the Rainbow hybrid flax to make its appearance on the North American Horticultural scene. It was first imported by Mr. Gary Hammer of Desert to Jungle Nursery and was displayed at the 1983 meeting of the Southern California Horticutural Society meeting by Mr. Jack Catlin. This same year San Marcos Growers imported this cultivar with 'Apricot Queen', 'Bronze Baby', 'Cream Delight', 'Dark Delight', 'Dazzler', 'Duet', 'Maori Maiden', 'Maori Queen', 'Jack Spratt', 'Sundowner', 'Sunset', 'Tom Thumb' and 'Tricolor' from Margaret Jones' nursery New Zealand Flax Hybridyzers. A planting of this plant at the nursery graced the June 1990 cover of Pacific Coast Nurseryman Magazine. This plant was originally introduced as Phormium 'Maori Sunrise' but in New Zealand there has been a tendency to replace the word "Maori" with "Rainbow" or leaving the word Maori off completely so this plant is often listed as Phormium 'Rainbow Sunrise' or just Phormium 'Sunrise'. The original names by which these plants were described and published should be considered the valid name and the revised names only as synonyms.  The information on this page is based on research conducted in our nursery library and from online sources as well as from observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in the nursery's garden and in other gardens that we have observed it in. We also will incorporate comments received from others and always appreciate getting feedback of any kind from those who have additional information, particularly if this information is contrary to what we have written or includes additional cultural tips that might aid others in growing Phormium 'Maori Sunrise'.