The Cordyline Chocolate Queen plant, or Cordyline fruticosa, is a colorful Ti plant with purple, brown, and green leaves with streaks of yellow. These multi-colored leaves are smooth, long, and broad, and they change colors as they age. As the leaves grow older and reach the bottom of the plant, they may turn to a deep green color.
This plant is a beautiful perennial that grows into a short shrub or tree and can reach heights of 3 to 4 feet spread up to 3 feet wide. Although the plant does not produce fruit and is not harvested, occasionally, the roots are cooked or fermented and eaten as a snack or used in meals. They attract bees and are mildly tolerant of salt.
The Cordyline Chocolate Queen plant is extremely slow-growing, and it can take up to two decades to fully mature.
The Cordyline Chocolate Queen plant is native to Hawaii, but it also can grow in parts of South America, New Zealand, and Australia. It thrives best in USDA hardiness zones 10 through 13, but it will also grow in other humid and hot environments.
Cordyline Chocolate Queen Plant Care
The Cordyline Chocolate Queen plant grows best with minimal amounts of sun and dappled or partial shade, but it is tolerant of full sunlight. You should plant it with at least 5 feet of space around the seeds or roots to give it plenty of room to grow. If the Cordyline Chocolate Queen plant is being raised within USDA hardiness zone 10, it serves best as an indoor plant or should be kept inside during the winter months. You should place it in a south-facing window to reach as much sunlight as possible.
To prune the plant, trim back any dead or dying foliage with a sharp and sterile object, such as a knife or scissors. The best time to prune the cordyline is in the middle of spring, which is just before the active growth period for the plant.
Propagation can be done by cutting the stem at the base near the ground. Then, cut the stem into sections that are at least 10 inches long. The original plant will quickly reshoot, and you can plant the cuttings to grow into cordylines of their own.
Cordyline Chocolate Queen Plant Advice
The Cordyline Chocolate Queen plant should be grown in humus-rich and well-drained soil. They can easily be grown in large planters or pots as long as there are holes at the bottom. The cordyline will remain resistant to wet and humid environments as long as the soil has good drainage.
The soil of the Cordyline Chocolate Queen plant must be continuously moist without long periods of drying in between. Overwatering can kill the plant as well, so be sure to check that the soil is halfway dry before watering it again. Moderate watering is best, and you should also mist it occasionally. You can use organic fertilizer during the spring and autumn to increase its growth and resistance to disease.
The Cordyline Chocolate Queen plant is susceptible to pest infestations, particularly from mealybugs and aphids. These insects can eat the plant and weaken its growth if the infection is prolonged. You can prevent this by using a natural pesticide to protect the plant from harmful bugs and outside diseases, such as leaf spot.