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 Weather Station

Products > Phormium 'Rubrum'
Phormium 'Rubrum' - New Zealand Flax

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Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Perennial
Family: Phormiaceae (~Xanthorrhoeaceae)
Origin: New Zealand (Australasia)
Evergreen: Yes
Red/Purple Foliage: Yes
Flower Color: Insignificant
Bloomtime: Infrequent
Height: 3-4 feet
Width: 1-2 feet
Exposure: Sun or Shade
Seaside: Yes
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: 15-20 F
Phormium 'Rubrum' (New Zealand Flax) - New Zealand Flax cultivar that grows to only 3-4 feet tall with slighly arching maroon foliage. 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. Introduced in the US by Malanseuns Pleasure Plants of South Africa. A great little red flax with an unfortunately confusing name as there have been many cultivars and seed strains with the name 'Rubrum'. We originally received this plant as a dwarf form that would grow to 2-3 feet tall but have seen it reach this height and then some in containers. Now we list it as growing to 3-4 feet but in 2003 we had reports from a customer that this plant can get even taller, more like 4-5 feet tall. The beautiful mass planting of this cultivar that was installed in May 2010 in the City of Santa Barbara's Xeriscape garden at Alice Keck Park Memorial Garden has remained at around 3 feet tall and looks great!  The information on this page is based on the research that we have conducted about this plant in the San Marcos Growers library, from what we have found on reliable online sources, as well as from observations made of our crops of this plant growing in the nursery and of plants growing in the nursery's garden and those in other gardens where we may have observed it. We also have incorporated comments received from others and welcome getting feedback from those who may have additional information, particularly if this information includes cultural information that would aid others in growing Phormium 'Rubrum'.