Family Ties


Small oil painting depicting cabbage trees tied together.. done in Naples yellow, burnt sienna and Indian red - size 140 x 200 x 15mm and for sale on trademe for a week.

Cabbage Tree (Cordyline australis)

The cabbage tree is a familiar sight in swamps or dampish places throughout New Zealand vegetation. It is also planted occasionally in gardens and parks and has been introduced into horticulture overseas. It reaches heights of 40 ft at its maximum development with diameters of 1–4 ft. The crown is made up of long, bare branches carrying bushy heads of large, grasslike leaves 2–3 ft long. Early settlers used the young leaves from the centre of these heads as a substitute for cabbage – hence the common name. At flowering time large panicles of small, white, sweet-scented flowers emerge from the centre of the heads. Good flowering seasons occur every few years only. It is said that they foretell dry summers but, from observation, they usually follow dry seasons. Small, whitish berries are formed which are readily eaten by birds. The tree is very tenacious of life, and chips of the wood or sections of the stem will readily shoot. The leaves contain a high percentage of long fibres which are occasionally extracted. -1966 Encyclopaedia of NZ

Thanks for the visit! Erika


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