Cordyline Comm. ex R.Br.

First published in Prodr. Fl. Nov. Holland.: 280 (1810), nom. cons.
This genus is accepted
The native range of this genus is Mascarenes, Papuasia to W. Pacific, Bolivia to S. South America.

Descriptions

Timothy M. A. Utteridge and Laura V. S. Jennings (2022). Trees of New Guinea. Kew Publishing. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

Distribution
A genus of 15–17 species distributed primarily in Australasia and the Pacific but with a single species in the New World; five species in New Guinea.
Morphology General Habit
Shrubs or trees to 5(–10) m, with thick rhizomes and thick, somewhat fleshy roots
Morphology Leaves
Leaves crowded at the apex, sessile or pseudo-petiolate, conduplicate, sheathing, linear-lanceolate to broadly ovate
Morphology Reproductive morphology Inflorescences
Inflorescences terminal or lateral, racemose or paniculate; pedicels not articulated; flowers solitary in the nodes, subtended by several bracts
Morphology Reproductive morphology Flowers
Flowers with tepals free or united basally, white, pinkish, mauve-purple or dark purple-grey; stamens 6, free, anthers versitile, introrse, inserted on tepal bases, filaments hairless; ovary superior, ovoid, ovules 2 to many per locule; style shortly filiform; stigma capitate or trifid
Morphology Reproductive morphology Fruits
Fruit a capsule, ovoid
Morphology Reproductive morphology Seeds
Seeds few to several, rounded, black, smooth.
Ecology
Found in regrowth but also in primary habitats including lowland rain forest and submontane forest as well as tree-fern grasslands and forest edges, and is commonly cultivated and used to define traditional land boundaries as well as being cultivated for medicinal uses; from sea level to 2400 m.
Recognition
Members of Cordyline can be recognised by their smaller habit, the leaves which appear to be petiolate (actually a pseudo-petiole) and the 2 or more ovules per locule; in addition, the tepals are not more than 2.5 times as long as broad. The leaves are green in the wild, but can be red, reddish-pink, whitish or very dark to almost black in cultivation.
[TONG]

Sources

  • Herbarium Catalogue Specimens

  • Kew Backbone Distributions

    • The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Vascular Plants 2024. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and https://powo.science.kew.org/
    • © Copyright 2023 World Checklist of Vascular Plants. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0
  • Kew Names and Taxonomic Backbone

    • The International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Vascular Plants 2024. Published on the Internet at http://www.ipni.org and https://powo.science.kew.org/
    • © Copyright 2023 International Plant Names Index and World Checklist of Vascular Plants. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0
  • Trees of New Guinea

    • Trees of New Guinea
    • http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0